I love it when I catch a glimpse of my son's tender heart. Tonight the whole family went shopping together at J.C. Penny. We stopped by the jewelry department for Big Sister, and a round stand of boxed rings caught Little Mister's eye. He was SO excited to see so many rings, and at first, I couldn't understand why. After examining a few one at a time, he spun around, looked up at me with excitement in his blue eyes and proclaimed, "This is the perfect ring to give my bride when I'm big!" I was so stunned as I realized why he's been so happy to see the ring display. His use of the term "Bride" made me tear up a bit, and just his anticipation of marriage truly made my heart swell.
I've always impressed upon my children that marriage is not the only plan God lays before his children. I've talked with all of them about the possibility of being called to religious life or simply to live single in order to serve God in a special way. My sweet Little Mister had never faltered in his desire to be a husband and daddy. His mind is often consumed with the steps he must take in order to be ready to lead a family, and I'm coming to realize that marriage and fatherhood seems to be written in his heart.
Our home contains its share of disagreements, and snide remarks are, unfortunately, tossed between my husband and I from time to time. I'm so thankful that God allowed me this opportunity to see that my husband and I are living an example of marriage that our 5 year old sees as exciting and important and a PRIVILEGE. He watches my husband work so hard for us and notices that Daddies should get down and play with their kids. When he thinks about what career he'd like to have, his concern is always his ability to be a good daddy with his job.
Standing in that department store watching my son kneel down on one knee, box held in front of him and ask, "Will you marry me?" with a huge grin on his face, I was in awe of the child in front of me, so grown up in just five years. How precious and fleeting is the gift of parenthood.