Last night marked one of the saddest nights of our journey as a separated family. However, as I reflect upon it, I can’t help but notice the tender mercy of the Lord in the timing… I was able to get the boys all down for bed IN their OWN beds at bedtime. This was an accomplishment in itself. Caleb(4) struggled as I laid him down. He desperately wanted to sleep in my bed. I had a thought come quickly to my mind that I know was not my own. I quickly made my way to the bathroom where I hang my nightgowns and snatched my most recently worn gown. I wrapped it around Caleb’s shoulders and asked him what he smelled (loaded question I know;) I was thrilled when he answered that he smelled me.:) Exactly what I was hoping he would say. I then reassured him that I was always with him and if he missed me he could just snuggle into my nightgown and I would be there even more. And by golly, it worked!! He slept in his own bed the entire night!! That was the first success story of the night. I would be amiss not to mention it. But not to worry, I will get back to the sad moment (although I’ll give you a spoiler and let you know it has a happy ending too:)
Anyway, as I was saying, I felt sad last night first because Jakob(8) had a series of three night terrors. He’s had them ever since we returned from our trip. They are really disturbing and I spent the remainder of my evening pondering and researching how we might help him through these times in his life when they pick up in frequency. I finally forced myself to go to sleep with the hope that I would make it through the night uninterrupted…. Not to be.
I was in a deep sleep when out of nowhere I was ripped from my slumber with JJ(2) throwing his bedroom door open (that just happens to be at the foot of my bed) and sprawling himself onto the floor in a rage. I immediately recognized that I was in for a struggle. I also instantly knew that my baby was NOT calling out for me to comfort him in his over-stimulated helpless state. He wanted his Papa! And Papa wasn’t home. This was the scenario that I had feared would play out in the first months of Leif being gone. Gratefully, so very gratefully, they never came. I was such a wreck then, I couldn’t have kept it together if my kids missed Leif as deeply as I did. But my baby missed his Papa now and my heart was breaking at the image before me. JJ was inconsolable. He couldn’t be touched, soothed, or helped. He had grown very attached to Leif over this last month. Leif helped him through his rough spells. Leif soothed him and took away the frustration and made it better. And now it was back to being up to me to make it “all better”.
And that’s when the tears started to flow. My sweet boy was acting out exactly how I have felt many a time during these past nine months. I have grown over the time Leif’s been at school and have come to accept that this is what it is, and I can’t change it no matter how I want to fight it. But I still miss the Love of My Life, and now my babies were finally showing their sadness too. With tears rolling down my cheeks I turned to the only One who could possibly give me a way to calm my baby, my Father in Heaven. And as a whisper in the night I was reminded of now what I see as another tender mercy. Leif had forgotten his pillows when he packed up. They were sitting on our bed, right where he had last slept on them. I scooped up my raging little one and grabbed his binky and took him over to our bed. I laid him down onto his Papa’s pillow and reminded him of where he was sleeping. Without a second thought my precious little boy snuggled down into his Papa’s pillow, placed his bink into his mouth, and all was well in the world again.
My children are blessed with a very unique perspective of the world around them. They can hear more then what most people hear. They can feel more intensely then the normal person, they can smell deeper and relate those smells to whom and what they belong to like only few can. My babies are blessed with much, and they struggle with an equal intensity. I am forever grateful for the tender mercies of the Lord that remind me that Leif and I are Not the only parents raising these special children. Their Father is ever-mindful of them. He knows them intricately. How very grateful I am to have him by my side on our journey.