On Earaches and Mary

On Friday night Landon asked to go to bed.  This was after he asked to take a nap on Friday afternoon and he slept for two hours.

Not normal.

At 11:00 Friday Landon woke up crying.  He was at the tail end of a cold so a little medicine, a kiss and a cup of water and everyone settled once again.  Until…

One O’clock rolled around and we heard the desperate pleas of our little one.  And he never went back to sleep.

“My eeaaaw huwts,” he cried all night, clutching at his left ear.  We rocked and sang and he’d slowly drift to sleep only to jolt awake again with a cry.  Back and forth we went between his room and our own room, Lee and I alternating trying to sleep and holding our hurting boy.  We debated heading to the ER but knew it was an ear infection and decided to wait it out until morning.

At 5:30 we put in High School Musical and I dozed on the couch.  By 9:00 we were in the pediatrician’s office where it was declared he had a nasty inner ear infection with a painful looking bulge and by 10:30 we were home with a little boy who looked like this.

Pitiful Landon

Not only did he look exhausted, he also look abused due to an unfortunate run in with the corner of the iPad the night before that left him with a shiner.  He was pitiful and in pain most of Saturday but by Sunday morning had perked up considerably thanks to numbing drops, antibiotics and twleve hours of solid sleep.  We were on the mend, and we were happy.

When his ear began dripping blood on Sunday morning we began fast and furiously treating what we think may have been a slight perforation in his ear drum with both antibiotic ear drops and oral antibiotics as we are flying a week from tomorrow and we need his ear healed.  So far the pediatrician has cleared us to fly and is confident that he will be fine by the time we leave.  This is a good thing because if she said he wouldn’t be I was already planning the car trip.

Sunday afternoon I went to a practice for an Easter drama that a few of us are putting on on Easter Sunday.  It’s a beautiful piece of work and I found myself very emotional at one point when the character of Christ speaks the word, “Mother?” This happens during the crucifixion scene.

And my heart broke a little as I pictured Mary watching her baby suffer.  My heart crumbled just seeing Landon suffer through ear pain, but Mary watched her son beaten, bruised and hung.  She watched the blood drain from the very hands that she held as a small child.  She saw the flesh torn from the back of the boy she bathed as a boy.

She suffered.

As my children grow I’m realizing more and more that I will always and forever see the infant form of them.  Sloan is developing a man-child look about him and yet I still see the expressive toddler who marveled at the moon.  Tia’s face matures a little more each day and yet I still see the big-eyed infant who couldn’t wait to conquer the world.

Landon is right where I want him right now.  He is today who I will never forget.

Mary felt the same way.  I understand that more and more the longer I parent.  She saw the man who hung on the cross, but did her mind flash to him toddling into her arms?  It most surely did.  Did she remember sloppy kisses and delighted laughter?  I’m sure of it.  As she stared at his arms stretched wide across the beams, did her own arms ache with the memory of the weight of her infant?  Did she smell the stench of the stable and see the dark, round eyes of her firstborn nuzzled against her chest? 

What kind of memories flooded her mind’s eye? 

And as he suffered and died slowly, did she experience pain herself?  What was swirling through her heart?  It pains me to even think about it, as it pained me to watch my toddler clutch at his ear in pain.

When they hurt, we hurt.

And then, when she heard He was alive – what did she feel?  What kind if disbelief and shock and fear and joy coursed through her veins?  When she saw His resurrected body, did she still see the little boy she raised or was He different somehow?  Did He give her an extra long hug and a kiss on the cheek, a balm to the wound she had suffered three days before? 

I wonder about these things.

Mary was a mother.

I am a mother.

And so I ponder.