Thursday, September 11, 2014

A Child's Prayer

3 days a week Josh leaves for work by 5:30am. He wakes up, gets ready and heads out the door before anybody else has even thought of opening their eyes. He usually doesn't even make us stir. But somehow, somehow the boys seem to know when he leaves, and one or the other of them almost always silently wakes, walks into my room and takes his spot in our bed. We snuggle for the next hour or 2 before I wake up and get going for the day. 

Sometimes this habit makes me crazy because I want the whole bed to myself and I don't want to have to be quiet when I finally do roll out of bed. But I want my boys to know that they can come to me and be comforted and that my room has an open door and is a safe place for them and that they are welcome there anytime. So I don't stop it.

Other times I think this habit is sweet. They snuggle sweetly, or pull my covers over their heads, or they put one tiny hand on my cheek while we drift in and out of sleep. I love that. They are some of the sweetest moments we share. 

This morning after Josh left for work I rolled over and nobody was there in his place. I laid in bed trying to decide whether to just get up (and do some packing) or lay there soaking in the peace and extra rest. I had resigned myself to getting up when I heard the creek of the boys' door. Tommy came in, climbed into the bed and said "mom. I had a really scary dream." 

I asked if he wanted to talk about it and see if we could make it funny or nice instead of scary. 
He solemnly shook his sleepy head. 
I asked if he wanted to snuggle.
No response. 
I held him tight and whispered in his ear that he was safe. 
Not a word. 
I got up to use the bathroom, and when I came out he had the solution. 

"Mom, maybe if we can say a prayer about that dream I'll feel better." 

I don't think I taught him this (though I clearly should have by now). We pray. We talk about God loving us. But in this moment I realized I've never taught him to pray when he's having a hard time. He is quite dependent on grown ups to pray, he repeats, but he doesn't come up with his own prayers just yet. 

I nodded, and asked him if he wanted to say it or if he wanted my help. 

He said he only needed help with the front part and the end part. 

So I helped him "Heavenly Father, I had a very scary dream" and he took off

"Please, oh please help me get that scaredyness out of my head and out of my whole entire body. I don't like that dream, so please put something nice or funny in there instead."

I helped him close and held him a little tighter as he slipped back into a much safer and happier sleep. 

I've never heard him pray such a genuine, heartfelt, faith-filled prayer. Being a mother means I'm invited to the wholeness of my Littles' lives. Their most horrible and most beautiful moments. I think that's what makes it so sacred. 
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