An afternoon with my nieces is better than my favorite dessert on my favorite day of the year in my favorite dress at my favorite spot. I had such an afternoon yesterday, and let me tell you it was divine. Little faces sprinkled from ear to ear with strawberry goobers along with giggles of contentment delighted me. We shared accessories and traded happy secrets. They are my absolute sunshine no matter how cloudy the day. I love all kids, but I have something special with my nieces: a natural, family bond.
I’m the oldest of three. When my brother Josh was born, I was angry. I was not yet two. My parents even captured this initial response to his arrival on camera. I got used to him, needless to say. Then the second brother Jordan came. At this point I had established my role as the big sister, a.k.a. the boss.
It was an important role. For you firstborns, you know it well. It means you protect the younger ones from death (keeping the little toy pieces picked up or out of reach at all times), you ensure that they learn about leadership and delegation (if you say jump, then they jump), and you teach them the importance of sharing (what’s theirs becomes yours). LOL. Seriously, though, it is a great responsibility, one that I thrived upon.
Thence began my babysitting career. I enjoyed helping out in the nursery at church any chance I could get, taking care of Mom’s friends children on weekends, and helping out at Vacation Bible Schools and camps. I worked at a couple of daycares and then after college graduation even became a nanny for a few years.
I think being single and childless has heightened my desire to care for children. Perhaps this sounds ironic or out of order, but the prospect of never having the opportunity to give that kind of love to my own makes time with children indispensable. I do not know what God has lined up for me. I have been told that being single is a calling. Honestly, I do not believe singleness is my calling, but I will accept it if it is so. Even though I gain a sense of satisfaction from caring for others’ children, I am keenly aware of the call for a mate.
Does this mean perhaps although God may indeed have a husband prepared for me that children may not be in tow? Hmm. I guess it could. Again, I will accept it if it is so. In the meantime, I have an overflow of love to give, and I am more than pleased to give it to my nieces or any other children in my care.