Being a widow and a single mom is somewhat similar. You expect holidays to be difficult. You plan ahead and put on your game face. It is almost surprising how easy they are because of the hustle and bustle. But changing the light bulbs... Now there's a task that can completely unhinge me. Shortly after Emmett died, I was wondering why all my rooms were so dim, and I realized that about half my lightbulbs were burnt out. I'm not sure I changed a lightbulb for the entire time Emmett and I were married. It's just something he did. He noticed poor lighting and changed the bulbs. I noticed dirty bathrooms and cleaned them. It wasn't exactly equal division of labor, but it worked. So when I went to change the lightbulbs, I wasn't even entirely sure where we kept them. And wouldn't you know that nearly every single light fixture in my house requires a different size and shape of bulb. So when a light goes out, it's another trip to the store for a special bulb. So when my shower light went out again this week, I sure did want to cuss. I'm still showering in the semi-dark with the sensor light in the rest of the bathroom turning off every five minutes. Because I'm awesome. And lazy. Mostly lazy, I guess.
Quinn came home from school yesterday, and when I asked him how the day went, he suddenly got very confessional. "Mom," he said, "I'm sorry. We had to write down what we were thankful for, but I only had room for three things, and you didn't make it on the list, but I really am thankful for you." I chuckled and asked him what made it on the list. He looked me straight in the eye with the biggest grin on his face and said, "ME! And the world and God because I love the world he made."
Recently Quinn has been bringing up the world and how God made it and how much he loves it. On Sunday we talked about what it meant to be a new creation and how God was making all things new. Last night as we read the last chapter in his Jesus Storybook Bible, which is amazing, by the way. The chapter is about the letter of Revelations, and it is such a beautiful picture of heaven and God making all things new and right. At the very end, after this chapter, is a little part about saying yes to Jesus and being made new. Quinn likes to read that, as I've always assumed to stretch out bedtime a little longer. He's seen baptisms, and when he brings it up we talk about that passage and how one day he can make a choice to follow Jesus. Usually we go on about our business and he forgets about it, but last night he was adamant that he wanted to say yes to Jesus right then.
Now having come to faith as a young adult, I have a hearty skepticism that borders on a sinful disdain of people who say they accepted Jesus as a child. Now I know it can happen, but I sure was surprised to find Quinn so adamant and myself so hesitant. I caught myself wanting to say he couldn't pray right then because there's no way he was old enough to really choose. And then I thought, "but that's not the gospel!" So being the good mom I am, I threw out a caveat knowing how much he doesn't like to pray out loud. I said "okay, but you have to pray for yourself because no one else can do this for you." He looked at me without flinching and agreed, though he asked me to help him know how to pray. I also said he'd have to talk with our pastor and let him know how he felt about Jesus, to which he also very surprisingly agreed. And then totally out of the blue he said, "but I'm only going to get baptized if I can wear goggles." I'm sure Jesus got a chuckle out of that one.
After praying and finishing bedtime I hopped on the treadmill for a long run to help me process the day and the upcoming holidays. On the one hand, I was overflowing with joy at Quinn's heart, but on the other hand, I thought, "well, crap, now he's got a big target on his forehead." I found myself thankful, but mostly terrified about how to shepherd this child without Emmett. How in the world will I do that when I can't even manage to change the lightbulb in my shower?