Dude, it’s a gift

Categorized as  Gabriel,  unexpected, 60 Days of Beauty

If you know our family, whether through friendship, family ties, or simply by reading the column or blog, you know of the unexpected gift we received 4-1/2 years ago.  Thinking that our family was complete, we had settled into life and work and raising the three boys God had given us.

And then.  Then came Gabriel, and Gabriel made four.

One of the biggest blessings to his father and I from the very first day was the eager love with which his brothers received him.  Ecstatic, they embraced baby brother, pouring into him all the affection that young boys are capable of giving.  Without blinking, they changed his diapers, those two biggest boys, and they all three showered him with hugs, kisses, and evidences of love in a thousand ways.

He adores them.  They can all, he’s convinced, walk on water.  It’s a joy to behold.

As I mentioned in the Christmas column, it was one of his brothers who suggested his name.  After looking up the meaning (“God is my strength”), Daddy and Mommy agreed, and so Gabriel he became.

As an infant, he was Baby Gabey.  Now he’s Gabe.  Gabo.  Gabey-Sha-Nabey and a bunch of other goofy stuff that families will put together.  But to his brothers, he’s “Dude.”

I jokingly tell people that we don’t need a family pet – we have Gabe.  He doesn’t shed, but he poos, so it’s a wash.  Pet?  Dude?  Toddler?  Little boy?  Lightening McQueen afficionado?  He’s all of those.

Here are a few candid snapshots from this recent holiday season.  What a delight – what beauty! – to experience Christmas with a VSP (Very Small Person).  The happiness that this one tiny person has brought to our family cannot be measured.  It’s simply received with gratitude.

Hanging ornaments on the tree…how he loved helping this year!  His handiwork was prominently displayed in a swath of ornaments about 2-1/2 feet from the floor.

Here he is with his most “favoritest” possession, Blanky.  Throughout the day, his little face appears right beside me, Blanky in hand.  “Notice me,” he seems to say.  “I’m here, and I could really use a hug.”  And so Mama obliges, bending to gather him up, hug him close, and kiss his little head.

And here he is in his brand-new jacket, purchased, much to Mama’s amusement, by his Daddy who at first whiffled and huffed at having to go into a kids’ clothing store until he found this:

And the source of Gabe’s pride?  Why, it’s his “letter jacket,” just like his big brothers.

Ah, how beautiful the unexpected can be.  “What first appeared to be unlikely, ill-timed, and impossible actually became one of the greatest gifts we ever received.”  (Christmas column)

That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *