Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Things We're Handing Down

Some good friends of ours just had their first baby, a beautiful little boy. I was thinking about that little guy tonight and it got me thinking of this song. However, after listening to it a couple times I was no longer thinking about their little miracle; I was thinking of the three little miracles I had just tucked into bed.

The song, “The Things We’ve Handed Down” by Marc Cohn, is—in a word—heart-breaking. But in a good way. It sums up all that you think of when you’re expecting a baby whether it’s your first or fifth. Read the lyrics and listen to the song. It’s beautiful.

The Things We've Handed Down
Don't know much about you
Don't know who you are
We've been doing fine without you
But, we could only go so far
Don't know why you chose us
Were you watching from above
Is there someone there that knows us
Said we'd give you all our love

Will you laugh just like your mother
Will you sigh like your old man
Will some things skip a generation
Like I've heard they often can
Are you a poet or a dancer
A devil or a clown
Or a strange new combination of
The things we've handed down

I wonder who you'll look like
Will your hair fall down and curl
Will you be a mama's boy
Or daddy's little girl
Will you be a sad reminder
Of what's been lost along the way
Maybe you can help me find her
In the things you do and say

And these things that we have given you
They are not so easily found
But you can thank us later
For the things we've handed down

You may not always be so grateful
For the way that you were made
Some feature of your father's
That you'd gladly sell or trade
And one day you may look at us
And say that you were cursed
But over time that line has been
Extremely well rehearsed
By our fathers, and their fathers
In some old and distant town
From places no one here remembers
Come the things we've handed down

There are so many times as a parent when I’m terrified of what I’m teaching my kids. I am terrified of what I’m not teaching my kids. I’m terrified of all the crap that I’m handing down to them that they will have to carry and deal with all their lives.
But it’s so much better than that. I get to hand so much more down to them than bad habits and a short fuse. Like the song says, maybe one of them will have my laugh. Maybe they’ll have my sense of humor or my goofy dance moves. I pray that they’ll have my wonderful husband’s willingness to work hard and his tenderness. And thank God they all have his gorgeous dimples : )

I am already seeing my passion for words in Eden’s love for reading. Sissy is a jokester like her middle-child mama, and I see so much laughter in her. Judah takes care of his sisters and mommy just like his daddyis teaching him. We are there in those little things.

I know I will give my kids things that I wish I didn’t. I know that they’ll remember me losing patience and snapping at them. BUT. I’m hoping and praying that those memories will be small and harmless in the thoughts of snuggles and stories and laughter. 


  1. You go girl! You are a wonderful mommy and example.

  2. love this. made me cry. thanks post-pregnancy hormones....