There’s a certain kind of pause that most of us with babies and small children experience. We wonder whether our dreams for ourselves will ever come back to life as we feed and bathe and nurture small bodies, our own energy drawn thin and yearning for sleep. The answer of course is yes, they’re still here. All of your dreams are here. You’re just zoomed way, way in at the moment. Kind of like the bricklayer in an old parable, which I will share. Trust me, your tired, beautiful heart needs this story.
A story for your tired, beautiful heart
There was once a bricklayer who spent her days laying bricks, one after the other. There was nothing glorious about the work. No one thanked her as she labored under the hot sun or in the cold wind, her hands thick with calluses and back bent. No one really noticed her, not much. Strangers passing by thought she was building a wall.
This wall was a labor of love known only to her, so she did not mind that others did not see the deeper meaning in each of her movements.
Then one day she put the final brick in place. She climbed down stories of scaffolding. Looking up, she smiled. Then she laughed, sending her voice and arms joyfully toward the sky.
What stood in front of her was a beautiful cathedral, unlike any other.
You are the cathedral
I love that image. A friend shared this story with me once as a metaphor for parenting – meaning that our children are the cathedrals that we build one tiny piece at a time. We can’t see the full picture while we’re in it, covered in their snot and bathed in their laughter. Bit by bit, as we witness the miracle of their unfolding, we also see the scaffolding and cement and steady presence of our own selves guiding their growth. We see the gift of love in its full beauty.
Yet, the metaphor is bigger than that. It extends beyond parenting to all of our dreams.
My friend, even if at times you feel lost for a while, or like your dreams are on hold – know deeply that your life is a cathedral. One day you’ll take a step back and laugh with joy at this breathtaking, soaring thing you made. You’ll see that somehow, all of your dreams were held in the gaze of love, and all had space to rise as you showed up, one humble day at a time.
You make one gorgeous cathedral.
Tell me, because I’d love to know. What dreams still live in your tired, beautiful heart? Go ahead and name them here in the comments, then share this post with someone you love. May our words inspire and lift each other up.
With joy and love <3