footprints

I love new fallen snow. When I can excuse all the paraphanelia associated with it, anyway. Shoveling, driving, cold, wind, trying to start my car… all the things that adulthood has made me associate with it. But in those magical mornings, when the ground is covered, and you’re able to sit, and stroll slowly, and see it before anyone else has touched it… it’s special.

I remember being younger, what we did, the more carefree activities that I associated with it- snowball fights, snow forts, running around and rolling in snow, covered and protected by heavy jackets and gloves and snowpants, but revelling in the freedom.

There’s almost an innocence to it… when you see a blanket of snow laying down on the grass, and you’re afraid to walk in it because it would ruin it. That it would somehow blemish the pristine beauty of it.

As I’ve grown up, I’ve found my desires changing. What I want out of life, and learning, and relationships. I’ve come to regard those as good things… they’re signs of change, and maturity. It’s interesting to pick it apart with the academic, analytical eye, see where it came from, why it happened, and where it might go.

One of the biggest changes is that the idea of having children doesn’t freak me out.

Let’s be clear- it’s not on the agenda in the near future, and I’d probably have a heart attack if someone asked me to raise a kid right now. But in my interactions, in watching how others have developed and grow, watching my friends start families of their own, it’s become… more real, somehow. Something I can almost relate to.

I think the genesis of this was a couple years ago, and while that was a snippet- watching a child’s genuine joy- I think it was, in some ways, a turning point for what I might want out of life. That the normality of a family wasn’t something completely out there, something my parents had, something that others did- it was something I might have too, someday.

Again, not on the immediate agenda, given my bachelor status. But the thought is hanging around, waiting for the train to pick it up.

Watching Ryan and Trisha dedicate Daniel last weekend brought that home a little bit. I knew them, had watched their relationship grow, and had the privilege of serving as groomsman at their wedding and MC at their reception, and am honoured to call them both friends. This was them, having brought a child into the world.  And in dedicating him to the Lord in front of us, asking us all to help raise him, in our way. To be supports to all of them, to be examples of what the young boy should be.

I thought of the snow, then, as we stood in support. The innocence of it, of little Daniel, having just started his life. No footprints or impressions, a clean sheet before him. Lucky for him, he won’t have to worry about starting his car in it for a long while.

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