I have spent the entire Christmas season wondering what Christ was like as an infant.
Was He a good eater? How old was He when he slept through the night? Was He calm? Active? Did He laugh easily? Did Mary chase Him around the house all day trying to keep Him from slamming His fingers in drawers and drinking from the dog’s water bowl?
Having an infant has made the divine birth feel so real to me. The images we see of the Nativity scene are so serene and beautiful, but I wonder if they mask the truth of how physical birth is. Of how tired Mary must have been, and how worried Joseph was that he couldn’t find a more suitable place for his new son. I believe that Christ went through mortality in a very real sense–along with experiencing the sins and pains of the world, He also went through teething, scraped knees, and hurt feelings. That He was comforted by a mother who didn’t always know the right thing to do, and a father who did his best.
I’ve also wondered how much Mary understood. Did she know that the infant she held had created the world? Did she know He would grow up to be loved and hated, and eventually killed? I like to think she didn’t know everything, that she held her infant and only knew some of the simple truths of mothers everywhere: that she loved her baby. That she’d do anything for Him. That He was divine and precious and a gift.
I am grateful for the new perspective and gift of motherhood, and in particular for an understanding of Christ that brings so much joy and peace into my life. Merry Christmas! I hope you spent it feeling the love of those around you.