This week, my little Hope has taken my breath away.
We had parent/teacher conferences this week and I left her little Kindergarten room with the biggest smile on my face. Most was what we expected. Hope is very smart. Hope has a lot of friends. Hope likes to talk a lot. Hope is a leader...even when no one wants her to be. :), e tc... And then, there was this.
Her teacher: "I have to just tell you this. Hope tends to see those students that other kids don't want to be with. She picks them to be her partner when we pick partners. She plays with them. She helps them with their work. And, we have one special needs student who we often can not understand when he speaks. Hope tells us what he's saying and she is almost always right."
I wanted to burst into tears. And I couldn't help but think that my little girl, who is, for sure, pretty stinkin' cute, but can also be such a sassy little thing at home, has a heart whose depths I am only just beginning to discover.
Our church, along with most other churches in our town have come together this weekend to share Christ's love all over our community in tangible ways. We are doing hundreds of projects all over town for anyone and everyone who needs it. So today, our small group, complete with the older kids in tow, got to be at the home of a sweet older lady who needed some fence and house painting done. Hope took an instant liking to Alfreda. I watched her gently take the hand of this older woman and walk up to her house with her, chatting all the time like they were old friends. Later, Alfreda invited all the kids in for cookies. (As a side note: Hope had already gotten a cookie when she went inside the first time and so Loren told her she could only have one more. Alfreda promptly told Hope that she was the boss and she said she could have two! If they weren't friends already, I would say their sassy spirits bonded right then.) After she got her cookies, Hope scampered off outside to play again with all her friends. But, I saw her head back there before too long.
Me: Where you goin, Hope?
Hope: Back inside to talk
Me: Oh. To who? Who's still in there?
Hope: (looking like I'm a moron) Alfreda
Me: Oh. (Be still my heart...tears pooling...blurred vision...overwhelming love for this child)
In the midst of all the hard parts of parenthood there comes this incredible richness. This constant discovering of my children. Bits at a time. In small doses. Because to see it all at once would most certainly cause my heart to explode. This week, I am thankful that somewhere along the way, Hope has learned kindness and compassion. And she has figured out that there is beauty waiting to be discovered in all kinds of people. Including herself.