Friday, February 10, 2017


Hans finds bath time to be rather terrifying, so, when bathing him we are just . . . so gentle. Usually one of the girls will help me. We keep a warm wet towel covering every part of him but whatever small section we are washing. We hold his hands snug against him so his arms don’t get free and startle him. We keep slowly pouring warm cups of water over him (as it seems to soothe him). And, when he has to go through the utterly terrifying moment of being lifted from the warm water of the tub, we bundle him into a towel quick as a wink and hug him to us. We just really gentle him through the whole ordeal in order to still his fears and keep things peaceful.

Photo Feb 03, 1 54 36 PMPhoto Feb 02, 2 13 54 PMPhoto Jan 25, 2 37 22 AM

As we finished bathing him the other night, I kept thinking of the process – of how lovingly it’s all done, and suddenly I thought, “Yes. Just like how angels gentled us through his birth.” And I knew that was true! We – he and I both – were just so utterly gentled through the process. More than was necessary even (just like with all our extra buckets of water and warm towels at Hans’s bath time). The path through his labor and delivery just felt like . . . being surrounded by the most warm and gentle and careful hands – eagerly and calmly soothing us through the ordeal. We were completely gentled. Funny when a word so clearly leaps out as the encompassing expression for a situation. Gentle. That’s what it was. Gentled. That’s what we were.

And, more than that, it’s what we continue to be as we step cautiously through this new phase of adjustment and refiguring. Hans will be one month old tomorrow. It’s been overwhelming and demanding, but I’ve also felt unmistakably sheltered and lifted and calmed.

Photo Feb 09, 1 48 18 AMPhoto Jan 23, 4 36 05 AMPhoto Jan 24, 3 40 37 PMPhoto Jan 24, 8 23 28 AMPhoto Jan 24, 8 24 01 AM (1)Photo Jan 25, 2 35 44 AMPhoto Jan 25, 4 34 55 AMPhoto Jan 25, 4 35 18 AM

Also, Jesse was baptized last weekend, and Hans was given his naming blessing. In both blessings Mike blessed each of them with kindness – specifically that they would treat their future spouses with kindness. It occurred to me afterwards that Mike blessing them with that trait was evidence of how much he values it. Kindness. Kindness to his spouse. What happiness that has meant for me.

Photo Feb 04, 8 42 50 AMPhoto Feb 04, 10 17 29 AMPhoto Feb 04, 8 43 03 AMPhoto Feb 05, 3 35 38 AMPhoto Feb 05, 3 51 07 AMPhoto Feb 05, 3 49 31 AM (1)Photo Feb 05, 5 25 38 AMPhoto Feb 05, 5 26 22 AMPhoto Feb 05, 5 26 52 AM

And . . . the rest of the pictures from the phone.

Photo Feb 03, 8 02 15 AMPhoto Feb 03, 8 21 40 AMPhoto Feb 09, 1 51 02 AMPhoto Feb 09, 1 51 52 AMPhoto Feb 09, 1 52 02 AMPhoto Jan 28, 2 39 33 AMPhoto Jan 28, 2 40 07 AMPhoto Jan 28, 2 40 11 AMPhoto Jan 29, 2 22 24 AMPhoto Jan 29, 3 05 54 PM


Kara said...

Awh... he's still so skinny and tiny. Little Hans. And a baptism! My goodness things just keep rolling along :)

Val said...

Aaah, so happy to hear from you, to and see that you are doing so well! :)
It feels so good too, to read about kindness and gentleness. Those are things rarely highlighted, yet deserving and bringing out the best of/in us!
I'm as fond as can be of all your beautiful words and pictures...

Marilyn said...

Eeek! Hans really is the TINIEST. That picture of him with bare legs and booties??!? Love him.

This talk of gentling is lovely, and makes me pause too. There are so many times I'm impatient and UNgentle, especially with fears or phases that seem silly/unnecessary to me---kids suddenly deciding they need to cry every time I leave the house, or even similar fears of baths...this makes me think I ought to use a little more gentleness with them, poor little dears. As our Father and his Angels do with ME.

Nancy said...

Thank you Val! And yes, those things aren't highlighted enough. I definitely haven't worked enough on gentleness!

Nancy said...

He really is just so scrawny! Especially after my chubby little Mette, I just keep laughing at this scrappy child with not an ounce of meat on his poor bones! :)

And that word keeps coming to me -- gentleness. I think I am meant to practice it more in how I deal with all my kids, but especially Mette who is so whiney and demanding and exhausting lately. If I can just learn to be gentle with her and myself as we muddle through this phase!

Gayle Harris said...

Such a beautiful blog, as always.

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