I spent a long time this morning playing blocks with my 2-year old. It’s funny because every time he gets them out, I get a little excited about what I am going to build. Will it be a sky scraper, some sort of garage, maybe a castle, the possibilities are endless. And yet, inevitably as I reach the best part of my block journey, putting on the finishing touches of my plastic masterpiece, here comes a chubby-handed wrecking ball to knock it all down. As I sigh at another creative vision gone wrong, a giggle echoes in my ear. “Gotcha Mommy!” Ha Ha Ha…
Yes he got me again, I think maybe the whole thing is just one big set up. He loves to watch me work, crafting my plans, color coating my blocks for the best aesthetics, concentrating on my next move. I am just realizing now that he is often very quiet as I work, most times not even building himself but playing with some other toys that are in the area. All part of his master plan, being so innocent, making me think he is distracted, but he is just waiting for the perfect moment to pounce.
And as soon as he has destroyed my blocks, he instantly says, “You play Mommy? You play?” Uh, yes I was playing, thank you, before Godzilla ruined my city. But I am very gently coached by this little fella to do it all again, to rebuild. Of course, his Cheshire cat grin staring back at me is always motivation to give it another try, even though I know the ending is more destruction.
After he tired of being a human bulldozer, we changed gears and played superheroes among the tower of blocks. He was Spiderman and needed to find a place to hide because I was the Penguin, good versus evil at 10 am. And no obvious place was good enough for him, his superhero needed to be well hidden, so we crafted extra blocks around Spidey to make sure he was very secure and safe from harm. My bad guy never got to him.
Both these scenarios made me think of everyday life. Sometimes these same scenes play out for us. We craft a perfect vision for life, a masterpiece. I know for me, my dream was to play basketball in the WNBA. My mom still tells me to this day she was angry with God for quite a while that He did not allow my dream to become reality, especially after I had worked very hard to make it happen, training for years straight. I understand that now, being a mother myself, you can’t stand to see your child hurt. Did it feel like Godzilla was crushing my city and throwing water on the fire I had to continue playing, absolutely.
But did I also feel gently encouraged to get up and try again, to rebuild? Absolutely. There was no smile in the sky looking down at me for motivation, but yes, I knew there had to be other plans. I needed to trust God’s masterpiece for my life.
Looking back at the journey of my mom and me over the last 20 years, there are definitely times I would have loved to put some extra blocks around both of us to protect us from harm, to keep bad things from reaching us. Did we feel at times like God was just waiting to pounce and knock down our tower again? If we’re being honest, probably. We have gone through a lot: pain, loss, disease and a near death experience. But every difficulty brought us to where we are today, blessed beyond measure, even though we have felt like refusing to rebuild at times. We don’t always get what we want, but it is well worth it to get back in the game.
“You play, Mommy? You play?” Yes son, I will.
To follow this blog, sign up by email at the bottom of the page. Follow the book and like it on Facebook at Cancer on Monday, Dead on Tuesday, Home by the Weekend.