Last week, I took McKay to buy his first suit.
The Husband was out of town, so naturally the man-task fell to me. Driving over there, laughing and joking with my biggest boy, I felt content. He picked the music, and even managed to not critique my driving. He reminded me for the millionth time why I love and adore him so much.
We arrived at Macy's and started flipping through the racks of suits. I tried to be helpful and point out colors and textures of fabric that looked cool. He rolled his eyes and laughed at his mama.
Before long, we were saved by a helpful sales clerk. He took one look at my boy, told us his size without taking a single measurement, and began to pull suits from the racks.
Grateful for the help, I sat with my phone outside of the dressing room and casually perused the Instagram.
When my big boy walked out of the dressing room, I was wholly unprepared for the emotion that would overtake me. It was like a jolt to my heart. Seeing him in that suit, his broad shoulders held high, his tall frame tailored and strong – I nearly lost it.
It was like a vision came to my mind. A vision, as unexpected as it was unwelcome. I saw him as the missionary he would be – and in just a few short years. I saw him, not as my child in holy Nike socks and a dirty t-shirt, but as the man he is becoming. I saw him all grown up.
And, I won’t lie, I was not at all prepared to face that vision.
I immediately teared up and felt like I couldn’t breathe. The air around me was thick and heavy, and I feared the weight of it was going to crush me. Looking at this man/boy before me – the flesh of my flesh – and knowing that before long he will be out on his own was more than this mama heart could bear.
I felt so small, watching him. So helpless.
Right then, ZZ Top’s song, Every Girl’s Crazy About A Sharp-Dressed Man came on overhead. It was so silly and so appropriate that we both burst out laughing. It cut through the emotion and brought laughter higher than my tears. I took a shallow breath. Then another one. I smiled at him. The heaviness passed, but left in its wake a weight on my heart. One that I know will probably hang there forever, getting heavier with each passing year.
Tender mercies come in all forms. Mine came in a song, played ever so timely, as I watched my child casually slipping through my fingers. In a dressing room at Macy's.