Temporary Things


He stands in the kitchen with a guilty look on his face.  I scan the counters in search of what might be the reason for the smirk.  I do not see anything unusual…at least not at first.  I glance back at him and my eyes fall to his skinny neck.  There in bright red and blue is the face of Spiderman resting right below his left ear.  He smiles as I feel a frown crease my forehead.   It’s a tattoo.   Proudly displayed on his neck for all the world to see and admire.

“Why did you put it on your neck?”  I ask even though I know the answer.

“Because Mom, it’s cool.”

Obviously his definition of cool differs from mine.  I briefly consider taking a scrub brush (or sandpaper) to the offending object, but decide against it.  Thankfully it is a temporary tattoo and will fade in a few days.  Not soon enough, however as the next day is picture day!  I decide to look at the bright side of the situation, my son just saved me $40.00 in pictures (as I clearly will not be purchasing them) and next week his neck will be back to normal.  At least it’s only temporary.

Some things in this life were made to be temporary and will come to an end.  We know and understand this basic principle.  Some things were designed with an expiration date; fresh baked cookies, the bloom of a rhododendron, heartache, Tootsie Pops, summer break, workouts, diets, Christmas morning, new school clothes, Slurpees, sleep, socks, first love, temporary tattoos and chocolate.



There are things we freely say goodbye to, such as Spiderman on the neck, and there are things we hold on to with a fierce grip of defiance, especially in matters of the heart.

Anyone who has experienced the heart break of loss understands the pain of the temporary.  There are things which were made to be temporary and there are things which were made to be permanent.  When we must say goodbye to a loved one before their time we understand the longing of forever.  Anytime we must whisper goodbye to a friend as they move across the country, or listen to the silence of an empty house, our heart screams with the injustice of it all.  Quite simply…some things were meant to last forever.  We know and understand that some things were made for eternity.

Eternity is fixed within the human heart.

Families were never made to be temporary.  Foster care was designed as a temporary solution to a terrible problem.  It was never intended to be permanent.  Yet, thousands of children age out of the foster care system each year.  They enter the system and only exit after they reach the age of 18.  They never find a forever family.  They are raised in temporary situations, within temporary relationships.  Parents were never made to be temporary.  All children deserve to experience the love of a parent that never fades with time.  They should know the comfort and safety of their forever family.  We must remember that some things were made to last forever and we need to be wise enough to know the difference.  We must let go of the things which are temporary and fight for the things that should be permanent.

“Image courtesy of {Grant Cochrane}/FreeDigitalPhotos.net”