I did something today I haven't done in years and years and years: I gave a baby a bottle.
My kids...all but Joshua...went from breast to cup.
Oh, I did occasionally send a bottle of watered down apple juice in their diaper bags to church...but I didn't give it to them by bottle at home.
Because of Joshua's heart condition, and his big, hairy tongue...nursing was very hard for him...and we had to supplement with some high calorie formula for a time.
But, Joshua is 30...so it's been a WHILE since this Mom has used a bottle.
Holly is going back to work in 4 weeks. We don't talk about it here at home. It will definitely be a bittersweet time for her. It wouldn't matter if she was leaving Rhodie for 2 hours with me...or 5 hours at Mother's Day Out...she would not be wanting to do it, and I don't blame her. That's the bitter part.
BUT, the sweet: she is a wonderful, compassionate nurse. Her patients are going to be blessed to have her. And, now that she's a mom herself, she is more understanding...and that will help her so much, not only with how she cares for her patients...but also how she relates to the parents.
Her job gives her a great deal of confidence, because she worked really hard to get to where she is. She will only work 2 days/week...which will give her the other 5 days to hang out with Rhodie. She will get to keep her benefits, and keep up her skills. Her job is hard...physically, mentally, and emotionally. It is also a place where she gets to use her spiritual gifts to minister to others.
She is such a great mom, and she is doing what is best for her and her family. If you saw my grandson, you would know why she doesn't want to spend 1 second apart from him...he's beautiful, and precious and sweet.
We are so thankful the Lord has orchestrated this time for our families to be together. We enjoy Holly and Aaron-the-son-in-law, and now we are enjoying Rhodie so, so much.
Growing up in an Air Force family, we, my parents and my siblings, never lived anywhere close to family.
And Jim and I have raised our kids, all these years, with no family around. To have Holly, Aaron, and Rhodie just around the corner? Well, it's such a gift...and we do not take one second of it for granted.
Back to the bottle thing...I didn't really think Rhodes would have any trouble taking the bottle. He takes a pacifier pretty well.
Well, he TAKES it well...he does not keep it IN well. HA!
I was prepared for Rhodes and I to be two sweaty, frustrated, tearful, messes...but he took the bottle like a champ, while Holly pumped.
And then he burped.
And then he took a nap.
I am very thankful to be able to share in these little moments.
"O God, You have taught me from my earliest childhood, and I constantly tell others about the wonderful things You do. Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God. Let me proclaim Your power to this new generation, Your mighty miracles to all who come after me." Psalm 71:17-18