April 12, 2011

The Grace of Interruption

"Mama will you lay with me?"

I sigh. Why is this glaring screen more enticing to me than her seven-year-old nighttime snuggles?

"In a minute," I reply, thinking she might just go fall asleep before I get to her. More than "a minute" passes and then, from the bedroom, "Mama?"

I relent. Walk down the dark hall into her even darker room. Grumble as I trip over the toys left out and the Sit-n-Spin rumbles loud under my feet. Will this house ever be mess-free?!

She's tucked in under her t-shirt quilt, a Christmas gift I had made for each of us before our move to Uganda. I cuddle her close, smell her hair, rub my fingers down her arms, think of how big she is growing and she really should have had a shower before bed and she giggles, "Mama, you're taking up a lot of room." In my snuggling I inadvertently took over her pillow and now she's just lying on a corner. I scooch over a bit.

She asks for a song. "But not a catchy one--I don't want to be singing it all night." I begin to sing "Stay Awake", but she stops me. "No, no, not that one! Less catchy!" Aggravated, I sing "Amazing Grace," with all the verses. She calls Benny to her side; he lies down and lays his head across her tummy.

The song's almost over and Noah stumbles in from his room, fortunately steering clear of the Sit-n-Spin. "Mom, will you lay with me?"

I have things to do, yes, but I consent and send him back to his bed to wait on me. I sing another chorus; Benny and Dorothy sing back to me with their snores. My little gift of grace ever-growing, and will there be a day when she doesn't need a mama's nuzzle hug and song to find rest?

I kiss her cheek and go down the hall to the one and only, Noah, waiting for me in his bed. He's nine and still loves a good snuggle time, though he rarely he asks. Everything in me wants to memorize these moments. These too-precious, fleeting moments when hugs and songs are enough to bring rest. I beg/pray that the Father will remind me ever so gently, when I get too caught up in myself, to remember that these days will not always be. That there will be a day free of mess, and that day will also be free of babies and children and scraped knees and silly laughter.

Amazing grace to embrace it all. Always.

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