Monday, February 16, 2009

Metaphor Monday

The River

My son, James, is on the cusp of big changes. He turned 10 last October, and since then has grown 4 or 5 inches taller and 10 pounds heavier; he’s at that gangly, thin stage – all arms and legs, with disproportionately large knees and elbows. I’m quickly losing my little boy, and it saddens me somewhat. He is increasingly fond of his independence, and where he used to sit with me for hugs and cuddles, nowadays he flits into my presence, gives me a brief hug, and then fueled with boundless energy, he dashes off again. I reach for him to hug him back, but he’s already gone, tossing his football in the air. I’m finding that it’s hard to get him to slow down, to shift his thoughts away from the spur of the moment, and to really get him to reveal his heart. To an outside observer his interests may seem shallow, as all he talks about is football, dogs, basketball, and his school buddies.

Recently James and I walked to the river that runs on the back edge of our property. Just a few weeks ago the river was up near the top of its banks, flowing very swiftly, swollen by days of heavy rain and runoff, but now, the river level is very low, and it flows languidly along its course. As we stood there looking at the river, James said to me “Isn’t it funny how the river changes, and yet it’s still the same river, going to the same place?”

This weekend I was cleaning up around the house and I found all his candy and valentines from his school party dumped out on the table. As I picked it up and put it all back in the paper bag, I noticed a small red bag, obviously handmade, with the words “from James” on the side. I was curious! Here was a valentine he had made for someone but had obviously not given it to them, so I peeked inside. There was a small piece of paper, and written on it was “Happy Valintines (yes - that’s how he spelled it) Day Mom! I love you, James”.

Lately I’ve found myself struggling to relate to James; his interests are so focused on things I don’t understand, and his pace is so frantic that he seems like the white water river flowing over the rapids, picking up speed and boiling over the rocks, whereas I’d like him to slow down and be a more gently flowing stream. But the simple valentine he made for me reminds me that like the river, he is not just the rapids, but he does still have periods of depth and gentleness. As he told me, it’s the same river, heading to the same place. And for now, I’m happy and blessed to watch it flow.




His grace is sufficient. said...

That was so sweet and yet so true. Our children grow up more quickly than we want. Cherish every moment.

Moose Mama said...

Don't get me wrong...I wouldn't trade my two girls for the world. But if I had started sooner...I would have loved to have a boy in the mix too.

What a sweet story.


Cindy said...

This is such a sweet post. My daughter is 21 and my "little boy" is 18. Time passes so fast.

I love your Metaphor Monday posts. You are such a talented writer.



Lora said...

I love seeing the pictures in your writing Adrienne - you draw beautiful pictures with your words! What wonderful opportunites we have with our children.

And me oh my, the Salesman would love the river on the back edge of your property. We are praying about the Lord leading us to some property with water on it!

And yes, you are more than welcome to use the prayer poem. I responded to you in the comments; but not sure if you saw it. Your kind words blessed my heart. Thank you!

Jenni said...

Well my goodness, how did I miss this? What sweetness; thank you for sharing!!