Friday, April 10, 2009


In our area recently, an 8-month-old baby died in the hospital.  The child had been found 'unresponsive' or something a month previous in it's daycare crib.  I assume it spent the intervening month in the hospital.

So often we hear about terrible abuses or accidents in daycares.  Sometimes they're just wicked people preying on children.  Other times it's good people, trying to do a good thing, and something bad just happens.

I don't choose to stay home with my babies because I fear some evil person will intentionally harm my child, or expose her to something damaging - although this IS a risk.  No, it's far more than that.  And one element of that decision is time.

When I heard about the infant who died in the hospital, my heart just broke.  I cannot imagine the pain of losing a baby at all, but how must that mother feel?  Now, I don't know the circumstances - whether she was a single mom and that daycare was the only option if her other children were going to eat in a day, or if she was in a critical time for career development - but circumstances aside, I'm sure her pain and regret must be keen.  I don't mean that the daycare was in any way responsible and she regrets putting her child into a situation that ultimately took his or her life (indeed, I've heard nothing like that), but that she certainly must regret the loss of so much time.

None of us know how much time we have left on this earth, and we certainly don't know how much time our children have.  We hope and pray that we all live long, fulfilling lives, but that's not always the case. 

 Her child had 8 months.

How many of those months were spent clinging to and savoring the sweet blessing that was her child?  Did she assume that she could "make up for it" later?  There is no such thing.  And whether her decision to put her baby in the care of others was based on dire necessity or mere convenience, it still cost the same in time.

How often do we let the moments slip by that we could be loving, training, building our children?  How much time do we lose?

And is it worth it?


Meghann said...

OH my goodness, that is so tragic. I am in complete agreement with you as usual. I always think of how I get to kiss and love on my children all day, even while taking them to the potty or changing diapers. And if they were in daycare, nobody would be doing that to them...they would be just another kid to take to the potty and change! I am so thankful it is ME who gets the privilege to do these things and I am not losing time with my precious ones...

Susan @ Heart Pondering said...

I recently found your blog and am pleased to have! We recently left our 20 acre farm in NH where we raised our own chickens (15), sheep (3), and cows (1) and ate off of our farm and others' nearby as much as possible... to the suburbs in southern CA, which has been a whole new world in more ways than one. We sure miss our farm!

This post was powerful (and tragic) - thank you. It relates in some ways to one I wrote yesterday on how we use time with our kids in our parenting - mine more about looking at how the culture views 'valuable' time for kids versus how we might as Christians.

I'll be back!

EllaJac said...

Meghann, I agree; we're so blessed, not only to DO what we do, but to RECOGNIZE it's value... Or at least we're able to remind ourselves when necessary. :)

Susan, Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting! What a world of change, from NH to SoCal! I bet you have a lot to write about... ;)