is it possible to be physically and emotionally drained while simultaneously feeling so fulfilled? that’s how i feel right now…
all summer when i prayed for a job i expected something dull like a receptionist position, which is what i applied for, and something that would get me out of the house and get me a car sooner rather than later. i never expected this. and, i guess, that’s who jesus is. unexpected.
in late july, pat (jason’s mom/owner of the daycare) offered me a job and i turned it down because i was so sure something was right around the corner for me even though i hadn’t heard anything back from any of the jobs i applied to. (over 50.) a few days later she offered me the same job but full-time. i accepted it after some thought. i was scared. this was my first full-time job and my first ever daycare job. kids and babies scared me. what do i do with them? how do i feed an infant? when do they nap? when do they eat? when do i change them? how do i play with them? discipline? huh?
i. was. terrified.
but my first day was… alright. i learned so much in those five hours… i’ll never be able to repay mrs. dee, my supervisor, for what she has shown me this last month. i’ve met so many different kinds of people and developed new relationships with babies.. parents.. coworkers.. bosses.. it’s literally insane. it’s got jesus all over it and i’m just in awe every day of how much i belong there, you know?
i see the heartache of broken relationships in a parent’s eyes when she tears up because she won’t see her baby until the weekend and tells me, “just make sure he gets the diaper bag,” as i tear up too because i know all too well the searing pain of loss. i smell the cigarette smoke on the 14 month old. i hear the chilling screams of a child that just needs love… and a long, long hug. (and maybe a whoopin’.) if i could, i’d adopt them. i’d hold them all for as long as i could and kiss them all goodnight and snuggle them to bed and give them all of their favorite things and pray long and hard over each one… but i can’t do all of those things.
but i can love them while they are with me. i can love them and squeeze them and kiss them and pray over them and snuggle and hold and feed and bathe and clothe and care for them… i can do that. because i might be all they have. and i can’t even comprehend or fathom that thought. that me. melody. a girl that was terrified of babies could be all these kids have for ten hours a day. that when they leave, they might not get all that i want for them. they might not get the silly voices and the lap time and the snuggles and raspberries on their cheeks and the toys on their heads… but i can give that to them while i can. while i’m able. and i’m able. right now i know god is developing a ministry in my heart and he’s giving me compassion where i never had it before… where i never asked for it. he’s filling up holes in my heart that i didn’t even know were there. he’s giving me gifts and abilities and skills for what he’s got ahead for me. my “plan” is changing and morphing into something new and exciting and weird and different and fun and.. scary.
every day at lunch i just “need a minute” as i so often say in my head. i need a minute to just… soak in all of what is happening to me. i need a minute to cry for the babies that have no home. i need a minute to cry for the broken families and the aching souls. i need a minute to collect myself and realize that i could be all this baby has. this tiny helpless baby needs me. right now. right. now.
i want to fix it all. i want to help all of them. i want to love all of them forever. i just don’t know what to do but cry and carry it all and give it to jesus and pray. but i want more. i want more ministry. i want more jesus to give to these people. why am i here? financially, it’s getting me a car. but career wise? emotionally? mentally? priceless.
i have so much more of a respect and admiration for pat now. she is so. so. so. strong. i am not. she is bold. i am not. she is firm, blunt, smart, and good. she is grateful, thankful, giving, loving, and genuine. i love her. she is a model for me. she is teaching me so much without really knowing it. this past month has rocked my world. i love to learn, you know, so this is… good. so. good.
i love it. i love. because of jesus. i love.
-an excerpt from a journal entry 9.12.13