I am the Holder. The Watcher. It was always an excuse to elude addressing my fear of heights when the family rock climbed. (I’d hold the goods and watch from the picnic spot.) It was my excuse for not wanting to ride Space Mountain – I’d hold the strollers and watch the stuff in line while the rest of the family screamed in delight from their speedy perches. Truth: for practically any family thing, I was the supreme holder and the watcher.
As my two children grew I’d be the holder of hands through tumultuous times. The holder of hair while she threw up a weird ‘condition assaulting her young body. I was the holder of a broken heart when an injury put a stop to playing high school football. I was the watcher of the clock when they kept late nights. Then the watcher of emotional and spiritual temperaments. But, then I was also the holder of prayer for them. And for me to do my mom job effectively. Lifting each family member in prayer as our spiritual and emotional temperatures waxed and waned.
Some folks don’t get it. Being the holder and the watcher means missing out on the fun or missing out on adventure. But for me, being the holder and the watcher has taken me on an adventure of spiritual highs and lows, watching causes me to see sweet things – the subtle smiles, the mischievous grin, the tiniest twinkle in their eyes, that would have otherwise been missed. Being the holder and watcher doesn’t stop when the children are grown, though, it’s alive and well with the grands, now! Although I don’t get to practice as often as I would like. In fact, as I look back now, I missed things. My watchfulness was often clouded by my human heart to see them happy. I get it that happiness is not the end all but when the kids were hurting or sick, my mom heart desperately desired for them to be happy and hear them laugh.
Now, I can’t see them. In fact even with Facetime and Skype we rarely speak face to face. Our relationship takes place via texts, some calls, emails and I catch a lot of news on Facebook. For whatever reason, God has put them up in the PNW and us in Texas. But, even now, I can close my eyes and there they are in the memories I’ve been holding through all the years of watching.
Through the years I’ve moved beyond watching and holding. And, now, I am a doer. An adventurer. And, I cherish those years of watching and holding.