On retreat last summer, I was asked to recite John 10:30 during Mass, the passage states: “The Father and I are one.” I know this is a reference to Jesus and his relationship to G-d, and yet I am drawn to this passage again with my son. We are one, in so many ways, flesh of my flesh, made in love and this reality keeps penetrating my consciousness more each day. We forget that our Christian tradition claims that this oneness with G-d through Jesus is for all of us to see, realize and embody. We can overcomplicate this theology in so many ways, but I keep coming back to the oneness of things. These first 6 months in Liam’s life, or rather 16 months if you count the life in the womb, have been such an experience of joy, grace, exhaustion and a love I have not known. From the infancy days to the playful boy that is emerging now, I am in such awe of his growth and his love. I also want to acknowledge the presence that Mary has been as a mother. It is extraordinary to see the love and care and devotion she has shown to him for these past 16 months and she knows that more than anybody. Thank you Liam Francis for your presence in our lives. You are the teacher, we are the students. I love you and I hope you sleep well on your first Half Birthday!
Reflections on Liam – March 5th, 2009 – 6 months – His first 1/2 Birthday
Mary and I are up late. It’s 1:47 am and Liam is sick with a cold and cough. I walk him in the Ergo (baby carrier) back and forth through our condo until he falls asleep on my chest and in my arms. He makes loud grunting sounds to soothe himself to sleep, until the grunts fade out and he rests completely on my chest and lets go into a sleep we hope will last. I am beginning to realize what all parents must do with their children, put their own rest, desires, and conveniences aside to be present to their child. I cannot heal him or make the cold run its course quicker. I can help be there as he goes through it and allow him the trust to fall asleep in my arms. I am keenly aware of the deep and profound interconnectedness we are all caught in through this experience of walking my son to sleep. My presence meets his presence and something magical takes shape. I feel his head in my hand, his lungs and chest on my chest, while I massage his little feet.
Peace be with you, now and always,