Olivia wants her ears pierced. Her daddy and I don’t have a single problem with it. But, the rule was the same for her as I remember it being for me: She can have it done when she is mature enough to take care of her ears while they’re healing.
Now, maybe I’m less trusting than my parents were when they let me get my ears pierced at age seven. But, seeing the difference in personalities of my children, I think maybe it really is that Olivia’s personality is just that different from mine. I don’t know. Whatever the case, here she is ten years old and still doesn’t have her ears pierced.
But, she’s getting them pierced for Christmas. (Shhh….don’t tell!)
You see, we’ve seen a great increase in maturity with her in the last year. She has been diligent in several areas where she wasn’t even six months ago. She has taken phenomenal care of the glasses she got this past spring. She has begun to show much more self-control in recent months. All in all, we’re just seeing a difference in her. So, it’s time.
The problem for her is that she doesn’t know it’s time. She, too, has seen her own growth and maturity. And, we have complemented that growth. But, still her ears aren’t pierced. And she doesn’t understand. She doesn’t know her reward is literally right around the corner!
Just last week she walked into my room and asked, “Mommy, when can I get my ears pierced?”
I responded with a grin, “You’ll just have to trust us. We’ve discussed it and we’ve set a date. But you have to trust us.”
She looked pitiful as she walked out of the room. She wants to trust us. But, she can’t see it. She doesn’t know how close or far away that date is. And it’s something she really wants! We know! We can grin in anticipation. We can wait to surprise her, knowing it isn’t long. But she is struggling.
Oh how I know where she is right now. So many times I have desperately wanted to see God work in my life. I’ve held the promise of what was to come in my hands, but I wanted the promise to come to fruition – or at the very least to know when it would come to fruition. It seemed as if I could know that one thing the waiting wouldn’t be so hard. But the waiting for an unforeseen length of time was just rough. Meanwhile, God was there smiling with delight, knowing the joy that would come when my wait was over. Knowing that it wasn’t a long wait. Knowing that His timing was perfect. But in the meantime, I was pitiful in the waiting.
I’d love to say that being a parent and seeing things a little more clearly from this side of the waiting means that I’m going to automatically always find joy in the waiting. I’d love to know that I will never be pitiful again. But, I know me. I don’t wait very well. And yet, just like Olivia is growing and maturing in so many ways, so am I. I wait better now than I did ten years ago. Maybe even better than I did last year! I am growing. I am learning.
In a few months Olivia’s waiting will end. She’ll have pierced ears, and I’ll get to teach her how to take care of them. She’ll be able to pick out cute new earrings now and then. And, we’ll find out (the hard way, I’m sure) whether or not she’s like her mommy and allergic to any earrings that aren’t silver or gold plated. We’ll probably share earrings now and then, and she’ll probably accessorize better than I ever dreamed of doing! She’ll come away with the gift of pierced ears. But, I’ll come away with something too. Every time I look at her ears, I’ll have a reminder that God knows. I’ll remember what it was like to be on the giving side of things. And, I’ll be reminded that because God is a much better parent than I am (aka perfect), I can trust Him in the waiting far more than Olivia could ever trust me.