My son is one of those uncommonly sweet people. Every time I pick him up from Sunday school I hear, “Miles is so sweet!”. And then almost every night I hear our doorknob rattle and turn, followed by tiny little tiptoes across our floor. My almost-three-year-old then silently climbs into bed on my side and neatly tucks himself in next to me before drifting back to sleep. It’s hard to say no to something so heart-melting.
He’s the type of little boy who tells his mama often that she looks pretty, and you know he means it. When I was sick recently, he voluntarily would softly rub my back and say, “I’m sorry you’re not feeling good, Mommy.”
His sweetness goes beyond just loving his Mama, though. He notices peoples emotions, and it bothers him when others are upset. When we took him to see Big Hero 6 in theaters, we thought that the movie would mostly go over his head. However, by the time the credits rolled we were left with a sobbing little boy quaveringly telling us that “Baymax fell into the water!”. He may not have understood everything, but he understood that Baymax was gone (or had been), and was absolutely torn up about it.
As his mommy, I both cherish and fear his tender heart. I cherish it because it is a gift, rare in this world, especially among males. Don’t get me wrong, he’s all boy, from his ability to turn anything into a weapon to his obsession with sticks and rocks (especially the throwing of them). Yet, he has a sensitive streak in him that not every boy has.
I fear his tender heart because I am his mom and I don’t ever want to see him hurt, and yet I know the heartache that this world holds for those sweet ones. Often in the world we live in, the ability to emote and empathize is degraded and made fun of. I know that there will be times that my precious boy won’t fit in because of it. I know that there will be times that he will be misunderstood because of it. I know that watching the suffering of others will just about break him apart.
I also know that God has gifted him with this heart for a reason.
I may not know yet what that reason is, but I pray every day that God will give me the strength and wisdom to nurture this precious little heart that He has entrusted me with. I can’t wait to see the man he becomes.