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Are You Dreaming Jacob’s Dream?

“Dreaming Jacob’s Dream” is a song on Michael Card’s album:

“Sleep Sound in Jesus”.

If you frequent my little place on the web, you might recall my LOVE of music.  As a result, so many wonderful {and sometimes not so wonderful electric shock Are You Dreaming Jacobs Dream?} memories are attached to music in my mind. 

I am known for bursting out in song {sometimes to the fear of my children!} at just the sound of a single key word. My kids would often have fun finding obscure words for me to see if I can come up with a musical response. This is a fun exercise, actually, and I highly recommend it especially on exceedingly long car rides.

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But I digress…

A few weeks ago I discovered that the Michael Card‘s “Ultimate Collection” CD I had purchased a LONG time ago was added to my Amazon Cloud Player.

Don’t ask me how???

I was so happy because Michael Card is my all time FAVORITE Christian artist! Among the songs were selections from these two CD’s:

sleep sound Are You Dreaming Jacobs Dream?

come to the cradle Are You Dreaming Jacobs Dream?

***If you are looking for a great gift for a new mom, these should be high on your list.***

As new parents, we owned both as cassettes and we applied advice that suggested that we play soothing music/stories at bedtime for our kids. These were played until they warbled and we replaced them with CD’s.

{To this day, you can often hear something “playing” from the kids rooms at night. These days it’s mostly audio books or dare I say an occasional movie smiley innocent Are You Dreaming Jacobs Dream?.}

One day in the car,  this song started to play:

Tears welling up, I was flooded with memories…

A soft light coming from a nightlight near the bedroom door of an increasingly crowded, small apartment. There is a bunk bed and a crib. It’s not “new” crib, mind you; only recently put together. Over a span of 9 years, our four babies will sleep in that crib. Four little lives entrusted to us that changed our world forever.

Children change the trajectory of lives simply by being born;
magnificence and fear intertwined among diapers and Little People toys.

In this particular memory,  three kids sleep soundly while a music tape is playing. Number four {the *surprise* baby} won’t arrive for about four more months. One “big” brother is all of 10 months old ,one brother about 5 years, and a sister about 7.

In the background this song is playing.

The yellow glow and the toys strewn about create an oddly peaceful atmosphere.  I am determined to keep that memory forever {and SO glad it currently lingers vividly in my mind}.

Three kids 7 and under rarely provides peaceful moments unless they are all sleeping.

The soon to be middle son  smiled a LOT in his sleep. There is a sublime reflection that joins the words to this song…the “smile” reference quite applicable.

It feels like yesterday. It feels like a hundred years ago.

“Let the brain washing commence” the hubby and I would joke more than once!

With each new baby we were mindful to tell the kids that a new “BEST” friend was arriving.

We made the time to remind them of how to be gentle with the baby because it was a gift from God; about sharing toys and rooms; about how each one of them needs to always stand by the other no matter what!

We were mindful about what shows they watched and what books they read.

*****SIDE NOTE*****

Why do so many shows and books assume that siblings *will* be jealous and despise with one another? 

To those with young children {and grand children} here’s a thought:  Kids pick up on the characters they spend time with and if they are constantly being “told” that younger siblings are annoying {or that Dad is a buffoon}, chances are they will believe it.

Maybe we need to assume that kids will NOT behave in a certain way.

The sight, the feel, the smell of the room permeates deep into my soul and I fear  wonder what life will be like in twenty years when these babies are “grown and flown” {THANKS Mary and Lisa for such a perfect phrase!}.

And here I am…in my own future.

Reflection provides opportunity to compare where we were to where we are. Hopefully, we have progressed in the affirmative and are willing to keep working on our “trouble” spots.

Twenty years later, I can see what a waste of time so much of my worrying was. I wish I knew how resilient and forgiving children are. 

As parents, we spend countless cumulative hours questioning our decisions:

Did I spank to quickly? Too often? Not enough?

Was the wrong child given a time out?

Should I have intervened with that argument?

Did I cause these little ones to “stumble”?

Did I say “I love you” MORE than I said “Will you STOP that?”

When we are in the thick of raising children, we are exhausted and self-critical. We are convinced we will make some irreparable error thereby sending our kids into years of therapy in the hopes someone can “fix all we broke”.


If I could travel time and tell that very young, very pregnant “me”  one thing it would be this:

Your kids probably will need therapy and that’s no reflection on you. We all need someone besides our parents to talk to. Children are shockingly forgiving and if you humble yourself before God and ask Him to “make beauty from ashes” from your feeble attempts at raising these gifts entrusted to you…He WILL.

And that’s what I have to offer to any parent out there. Don’t be so hard on yourself, walk humbly, and you will be shocked at the joy you find when you are in your own future.

 

How about you? Is there a lullaby or song that floods your mind with memories of your days as a young parent/caregiver? Please fell free to share…and post a link to a blog post if you have one!


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5 Responses

  1. “And here I am…in my own future.” Thank God for that. Everyone survived their adventures as guinea pigs and they are good, growing, healthy young adults. Thank God we didn’t know how resilient they were or we might have been harder on them. I wasn’t into Christian music at the time so I sang snippets of every song I knew to my babies. Lots of Patsy Cline, Disney tunes, Billy Joel. No wonder their tastes are so eclectic now! Nice post, girlfriend!
    Carol Moore recently posted…Reflection on a Separate PeaceMy Profile

    • donnao

      Yeah…I sang a bunch of my “younger days” music as well as quirky folk songs like “You Are My Sunshine” :0). Music has a way of sticking with ya!

  2. I haven’t listened to Michael Card in ages – had forgotten how good he was. i have so many great memories of my own 4 kids when they were little. Miss those years! My youngest graduates in the spring so we will be empty nesters soon. The years go too fast.
    Barb recently posted…5 Tips for People PleasersMy Profile

    • donnao

      Wow…it does kinda sneak up on ya, huh? I still have my two at home…they started 10th grade (not twins, just started homeschooling them the same year…now they use a cyber program). Just over three years and then I will be with you. I think it will be harder when they go than the first two…since then it will be SO empty around here 0_0. Maybe I will get a job or something…heehee!

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