The Blessing of Not Knowing

—————– Journal Entry 2/9/2017 ——————–

My baby’s getting married tomorrow. Well, no one else would call her a baby. They would call her a competent, confident 30-year-old woman. And I do, too. But to me there is so much more. I still feel the exquisite weight of a sleeping baby on my lap. And the arms of a gleeful toddler around my waist when I arrive at daycare because a day is a long time in the life of a three-year-old. And the shampoo-scented head of a teenager on my chest as she weeps about an adolescent crisis.

But, I can’t miss those times because, look at her now. She is a good woman and she is marrying a good man who loves her and asked her to marry him. Who asked her dad for his blessing and asked me for her grandmother’s wedding set to be engaged with. So that her grandmother could and will be a part of her life always.

And who can say no to these requests? Not her dad. Not me. Certainly not her, because, well isn’t love and happiness what we all want for each other?

And I can’t miss those times or wish to go back, despite wanting to correct mistakes and temper impatience and hug more and hurry less. Because if I change anything we won’t end up where we are now. Anticipating tomorrow when she walks down that aisle on her daddy’s arm and 20 minutes later walks out of the church a wife. And what happens after that short 20 minutes is the rest of her life.

And I don’t have the right to see into most of it. But I have the privilege of being a part of some of it. And I don’t want to miss a minute of it.

I had no idea, of course, that just two short months later my newlywed daughter would leave this earth for Heaven.

Most every adult has regrets and often those regrets have to do with loss. It may not be the death of a loved one, but could be the loss of a friendship, the loss of youth, opportunities, roads not taken. And we say to ourselves “oh, if I had only known.” 

But there are things that are too hard to know about. Things that would make living too filled with dreadful anticipation. If each of us had known at the moment we conceived our child that we would outlive him or her, would we have been able to bear it? I would not

Mary knew. Joseph knew. They knew the child Mary carried was destined for something different. That he was of the Holy Spirit. They were both faithful Jews and knew the scriptures. They knew this child was the one prophesied about. The Savior of the world. They were each told this by an angel of the Lord. Simeon, the old priest in the temple, told them of Jesus’s destiny.

Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

Luke 2:34-35 34

Did they know how and when he would die? It doesn’t seem so. But they had to have known that their lives would be forever changed and that they would not be able to keep this child as their own for long. He was God’s son and belonged to God and to His Kingdom. Not to this world. Not to them. Not for long.

How did they bear it?

Sometimes not knowing is a blessing.

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