I have the absolute delight these days of watching the daily vibrancy of a 5 month old. She has gone from being able to just look about to being able to reach out and touch…to being able to grab and hold….to being able to communicate….to now being able to lift herself up and just about motor about on her knees.
Literally every day brings some new growth, some new discovery, some new strength.
I find myself wanting to capture every moment. To capture in a picture or a video…to hold that moment and not release it. Sometimes, honestly, it is difficult to just enjoy the moment as I scramble to grab the camera. I’ve had to be intentional about just enjoying the moment.
Treasuring these moments in my heart. Sounds familiar, huh? How good of a thing is it that Mary didn’t have a camera? That she didn’t tell Jesus to freeze every moment for pictures or to capture the moments on video. Instead she simply treasured these things in her heart.
They are safe there….or are they?
Madeleine Jane. My girl is named after two rather amazing women…well, kinda. Her first name is really just a hat-tip to Madeleine L’Engle. We loved the name, and I loved how L’Engle spelled her name. L’Engle and her writings have had a great impact on my faith. She is a wonderful example of a strong and vibrant woman. A woman who thought deeply and treasured things in her heart, and who communicated them wonderfully.
Jane. That is for my mother, although technically my mother is Janie…her grandmother was Jane. So, Jane.
She has lived an amazing life, and I got to as a result of being by her daughter. She had an incredibly bright and quick mind, a wonderful singing voice and a sharp wit. She could intimidate the best competitor and be incredibly tender and generous to those in need. She was in many ways larger than life.
And she is fading.
As quickly as Madeleine learns a new talent, Mother forgets a piece of who she is. She forgets who her husband is, or the events of her remarkable life. She forgets her children, or remembers that she has children but does not know we are they. She forgets the day, the week, the place.
Yet, she is still present with us. And sometimes, we get the bittersweet gift of her being present mentally with us.
She delights in Madeleine, sometimes just as any baby that she would encounter, and sometimes…..sometimes she knows that this little image bearer is her namesake. And then she will hold her a little differently, speak to her a little more tenderly and tell her that she will pay attention to what becomes of this little one named for her.
And I want to grab the camera or the video and capture that moment. Because that moment is precious, and I am keenly aware that it will slip away before I am ready to let it go. I want to be able to feel it again, to hold it longer.
I want Madeleine to know this woman she is named for.