Teaching them to crawl

“Come on, Nellie, come on!” I coax, as I flap my arms excitedly. She flashes me a huge gummy smile as her arms and legs fly into the air. She starts to flail.

“No, sweetie, you have to keep your arms and legs on the ground. It’s your tummy that should be in the air! Like this!” I lay flat on my stomach and dramatically lift my stomach higher until I’m on my hands and knees in a crawling position.

More flailing.

Nellie doesn’t know how to crawl–yet. But I do. And as her mom, I want to do everything in my power to help her learn. So I coax, and I demonstrate, and I encourage. I place countless toys just inches out of reach. And so far, Nellie has responded in the same way every time:

Flailing.

Nellie doesn’t understand my words. She may not be strong enough or coordinated enough to copy my movements. And yet, on any given day of the week, you could come upstairs to Nellie’s room and find me sprawled out on the floor motioning frantically for Nellie to crawl to me.

Why is this? Because I care for my daughter. I want her to learn. I want her to explore. I want her to be mobile. And I want to be a part of her process–that is, the process of her learning to crawl. All of these are good things, but at the end of the day, Nellie has to crawl on her own. She has to understand the need to keep her arms and legs on the ground…on her own. And she has to build up the strength to lift her tummy off of the ground.

My desire to show Nellie how to crawl–and ultimately the realization that I can’t really show Nellie how to crawl–has helped me to reach an important understanding.

One day, Nellie is going to face a challenge in her life. She won’t know what to do. I’ll want to hold her hand and lead her forward–to coax her and encourage her. I know I’ll try my best to help her in any way–to give her every answer that I have. But when that day comes, I won’t be able to fix all of her problems, whether I have the answers or not. It will be up to her. My precious girl.

It is on that day that I hope I remember these afternoons on the floor of her room. All of the prodding and flailing. I hope I remember that as much as I love her and want what’s best for her, there are certain areas of her life that a mother can’t control. But that doesn’t mean I have to get off of the floor. Because although right now Nellie hasn’t figured out what I’m trying to tell her, one day she will.

And one day she will crawl.

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Many are the Plans

I suppose you’ve heard by now, but the La Tour family is growing by one, and my husband Trigg and I are expecting the sweetest, tiniest¬†bundle of joy in November. We found out recently that it’s a girl, which means in a few months this world will welcome Miss Nellie Grace La Tour! The fact that there is another life inside of me is one I’m still getting used to, but we couldn’t be more excited. And so begin the days of preparing for and dreaming about baby. ūüôā

But this post is less about the biggest thing happening in our lives right now and more about everything else. Of course Trigg graduated almost two months ago, so big changes have come¬†for him months before Nellie arrives! In May he began working full-time at RCAL Products Inc. in Prairie Grove, AR (about 25 minutes outside of Fayetteville). He’s worked there for almost three¬†years as an intern and is now transitioning to design engineer!

For the past three¬†years, Trigg has driven almost an hour every day to get to and from work, so we knew when he graduated that we’d like to move out closer to RCAL. The plan was for it to be my turn to commute, since I still have three semesters of my applied mathematics degree/Spanish minor left at the University of Arkansas.

Well, I’m excited to say we recently closed on a sweet little fixer-upper farmhouse on an acre of land, merely seven minutes from RCAL! We’ve seen God working all throughout this (very long) process, and we trust Him to continue to take care of us. Now Nellie will have a real home to come home to!

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Of course, “Many are the plans in a person‚Äôs heart,¬†but it is the¬†Lord‚Äôs purpose that prevails” (Proverbs 19:21). After much prayer, Trigg and I know it’s not God’s plan for me to raise this baby while I’m still in school. I will not be finishing my degree at the U of A. At least not any time soon! This summer and in the beginning of next fall, I will be taking classes from the Northwest Arkansas Community College in order to finish out an associate’s degree. I’m scheduled to finish by October at the latest, so school will be long gone before Nellie Grace arrives!

This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve made in my whole life. The world tells me that I need a degree to fit in. I need a degree to be an intelligent individual. I need a degree to get a job. I need a degree to be worth something. But God is teaching me to overcome my pride and trust in Him. Because raising children is not easy, and it’s not something to be taken lightly. But raising this baby is God’s plan for my life, and not finishing my degree is part of the price I need to pay to follow His calling.

So, friends and family, I seek your understanding and support in this crazy time in our lives!¬†Through all of it we are seeking God’s guidance, and through all of it we continue to receive His¬†blessings (the tiniest of which is coming in November!!).

 

Cari