lessons in parenting

I hear the steady squeak of the rocking chair in the next room. The whirring of the fan creates a steady hum. There's the occasional giggle coming from little Silas. But the most peaceful sound I hear is my friend's voice as she sings to her two-year-old son. "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me..." I picture Silas cuddled in her lap as she rocks. I imagine him looking straight up at her face, his eyes locked with hers, as she soothes him with her beautiful, melodic voice. The singing soothes even me, a room away, as I lay on the couch just listening. I can only imagine the tidal wave of peace it causes to gush over Silas' toddler heart.

I've learned much about the childbirth process in the past few days that I've spent with my nine-months-along friend. Some incredible further-proof-there-is-a-God miraculous aspects of it, as well as horrific I-can't-believe-no-one-tells-you-this-stuff utterly crazy aspects of it. But I've also discovered so much about parenting. I've seen modeled before my eyes the wonder of a patient, graceful, communicative mom. I've been taking mental notes; I can only hope to someday be half the mom that Kitty is.

I can't wait for Junior to arrive, for so many different reasons. I am humbled and overwhelmed to finally meet my precious namesake. I can't wait to hold and carry her in the oh-so-chic baby sling that was handmade just for me. And I'm eager to watch and learn as Kitty becomes an incredible mother of two.

I've got 26 more days here, and I know the lessons have only begun. I'm paying close attention.