This afternoon, after a busy morning with a visiting friend, the kids were wiped out. I put them down for naps and they didn't even complain, which is truly rare. I waited a few minutes and grabbed a little snack, catching up on blogs and waiting for someone to make a ruckus that needed to be dealt with. For the most part, all was calm. But then I heard a bit of shuffling and moving in my bedroom, which meant that Charis hadn't settled down to sleep, so I popped my head in the door to encourage her to lie down and rest. She was sitting on the bed, having artfully arranged the pillows to form a sort of Charis nest, and simply smiled an innocent smile as I gently scolded her for playing.
After that, I figured it was safe to commence with my usual naptime activities, which don't regrettably include a nap. I sat down at the computer, arranged my own pillows artfully, and set to work.
I had been working for about an hour when I had an overwhelming urge to go cuddle with Charis. I think I was feeling a trifle guilty at scolding her when she really wasn't doing anything so terrible. And with the constant reminders lately of how life is but a vapor, I thought I should probably act on my urge; after all, work will always be there--or not--but my sweet dear won't always be three years old and of good cuddling size. This is the girl who, most mornings, will try to get me out of bed by saying, "Mommy, do you want to come cuddle with your little girl?" I know that one of these mornings, I will wake up and she will be sixteen, and her phrase will be something like, "Mom. You are so lame. Let me have some privacy and watch my shows!" Little girl, indeed. I ought to smack her mouth! But I'm getting ahead of myself.
So I saved my work and quietly crept into the bedroom, settling myself down beside her. She's not really a sleep-cuddler, so I came as close as I could without actually touching her, and I marveled at this beautiful creature: how her hair lay smooth across her face, how her shoulders rose and fell with each gentle breath, how tiny she looked, but how big she has gotten since she first came to our family. I inhaled the moment, trying to etch it in my mind permanently.
Moments later, my sweet little girl rolled over, saw me there, and said sweetly, "Mommy, will you please get out of my bed?"
Well, it was nice while it lasted.