Friday, May 11, 2007

Playing 'Grown-Up' for a Day

I'm sure there are a lot of people that wonder why I babysit so much. Nearly every weekend of mine is spent with gradeschool children and younger. Shouldn't I be out partying or watching movies with girlfriends? What about shopping or grabbing coffee and getting my nails done? Those things are all well and good, and on some occassions I do do those things, but I like spending time with these children. I don't do it for money. I don't do it because I feel obligated. I do it because I want to.

There is a family that I sit for on a very regular basis that is such a part of my life, they're practically family. Their four children feel more like siblings or nieces and nephews than just kids that I watch. I love them. I enjoy being with them whether we're watching a movie, playing outside, or jamming to music in the play room. Each is so beautiful and has been such a blessing in my life.

When I first met these kids they were very shy. They didn't talk much except to beg to stay up an extra fifteen minutes past their bedtime. Over time, however, they started to open up. The youngest one, who, at first, threw fits when Mommy left, was now excited to see me. He and I get along very well now and I just love watching him grow. I love watching all of them grow.

It's neat to be a part of someone's life like that. I'm not their mom, dad, uncle, aunt, sister or brother. I'm their 'babysitter' and yet, it never feels that way for me. It feels like I'm going to hang out with my lil' buddies. And at the same time that I am so relaxed and easy going and happy to be with them, I also am the adult in the house. I'm the leader, the one in charge, the 'go-to' when anything goes wrong.

It's an awesome responsibility to have I think and I am very grateful that so many trust me with it. So little of what I do is for other people. This, though, always feels rewarding in that way -- like I'm doing something good for someone else. I am taking responsibility, for a couple of hours, for these precious lives. I, for a day, am playing 'grown-up' and doing something truly important.

I pray I always see the beauty of God in these little faces. They have changed my life.

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Blogger Margaret in Minnesota said...

As someone who has seen a lot of babysitters come and go, believe me when I tell you that you are worth your weight in gold. I wish that you were closer; my kids would love you!

5/12/2007 10:40:00 PM  
Blogger Ginny said...

Hey Laura!

Those kids are blessed to have someone like you to help and guide them along the way.

Really like your blog and would like to put a link to it on the blog I work on with my sis Marie, do come drop us a line.

God bless you!

5/12/2007 11:14:00 PM  

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