A mother who I know only through brief introduction looked at me and said, "I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but if I were you I would try to give your oldest a little more time and love before the second comes along." Hhmm. I tried not to take it the wrong way, and at least by outward appearances humbly accepted the advice. Only after I left the conversation and let the dialogue fester a few days did it really start to bother me.
Love Luke more? Give him more time? I hardly work to give him time. I feed, I cuddle, I rock, I sing, I read, and I play Lego's and dinosaurs all day long for him. I hope and pray everyday that the time I give him will pay off later. I do it all...for him.
How could I love Luke more? How could any good mother consciously love their own child more? I don't love perfectly, I have failures everyday. I could be more patient, I could cook one less frozen pizza for lunch, I could reserve computer time for only when Luke is sleeping, and a thousand other things I'm both aware and unaware but with prayer hope to improve. But love? If anything, I wonder if a child can be loved too much. Can I hug, kiss and praise him to a fault?
With the arrival of little Baby #2, it will not only be Mark and I that go through a transition, but Luke as well. Luke will have daily practice on those lessons I'm trying to teach him now--patience, sharing, gentleness. If anything, my fault with him has been loving him to the point that all of my time is his time. A new baby will teach him that he may have to wait ten minutes for a cup of juice, that my arms aren't only for consoling him, and that he can take his shoes off by himself. Will these little denials of service signify less love? I really don't think so. If anything, these lessons will shape his character and will, and maybe in the process bring out qualities which haven't surfaced yet.
A little boy, selfish for all of his mother's love, will soon learn that a mother's heart knows no depth too deep.