Congratulations abound! From the first announcement of, “I’m having a baby!” It was really that we are having the baby. We, as in the grandmother, the grandfather, the cousin, the neighbor, the preacher, the community, and so on. As the African proverb goes, “It takes a whole village to raise a child.”
I was ‘enlisted’ to serve as an au pair for an entire year. Truly an honor it was and is, to be entrusted with such a priceless gift from Heaven. Although I already had two sons of my own, I became a student again among the officially baptized (and a baptism it was) by formula, by carrot glop, by oatmeal, and, uh, other wet solubles, until baby could actually throw the rice cakes. Hear Baby laugh!
Having a baby means change, and it requires more than changing your cellphone cover from blue jean to plastic. Although already a veteran and a trooper, I learned much. And I will share:
1) Babies are people, who are just packaged in a miniature form.
“Can you believe that child actually got angry?”
2) They arrive ‘here’ with distinct personalities and can immediately express dislikes and preferences.
~ Babies have a hilarious sense of humor but will not laugh at all your jokes.
~ Baby likes hot (safe temperature) oatmeal, a warmed bottle and chocolate!
~ Baby has a favorite color.
3) Babies innately know how to and will display unprompted affection.
~ Baby places cute bare baby foot upon you purposely, because you took the time to feed him or her that wonderful meal.
4) Baby needs you to ‘commandeer’ the spoon or else the mission will NOT be thoroughly accomplished.
5) DO NOT introduce baby to Play Doh until baby is three or older to prevent baby from confusing poop with clay.
6) Baby remembers Heaven and will often smile at the memory of it, especially during sleep.
7) Baby needs to sleep!
8) Baby can and likes to dance, and dance and dance….
9) Baby may see and try to talk to Jesus and angels.
“(T)hese little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven” Matthew 18:10.
10) Babies should come with wet wipes and instructions.
11) Babies learn by repetition.
~ So get your patience on. So get your patience on. So get your patience on.
12) Babies eat like a horse, so keep a dollar on you, no a five—better yet a twenty!
13) Unless you can afford it, do not purposely get into Baby Production. God does provide for all whom He sends. Otherwise, consider that this is for the ‘Big Dogs’, the ‘High Rollers’, the ‘Whales’—those who can supply at a moment’s notice.
“Diapers cost how MUCH now?” “The daycare charges WHAT?!”
14) Babies need, are nurtured by, build confidence upon, advance by, express their identity through, and grow with (wholesome) affection.
15) The sound of a crying baby will one day become music that you will crave to hear when the nest is empty and no one’s near.
~ Remember, we were all once infants, and we all become older. Baby can have a memory like an elephant, so handle with care, better yet, LOVE.
“ And … they seemed unto him but a few days, for the love he had” Genesis 29:20.