Last night, Jo called me to bed early mostly because she has not yet forgiven me for being with K at the hospital last week. I know this is the root of it because a couple of nights ago at bedtime she said, “Mama, next time you go to the hospital with K you will take me. Don’t say no. Now lay back down.” She’s slept with me on my pillow every night since I got back and has woken up needing me (well before my bedtime) to fall back asleep many nights. Last night as I laid there, I wrote this:

It’s nighttime.

I’m lying next to a small, softly-breathing child, practicing presence so she can find rest again. It feels like such a small thing, while so many are busy doing big things, far-reaching things, things that go somewhere.

I’m pondering the smallness of the moment, perhaps even thinking about the way small, still moments can chafe a bit when I remember how Jesus said that whoever welcomes a little child welcomes him and the one who sent him, and suddenly it is a holy moment and I am not just practicing Josie-presence, I am practicing Jesus-presence.

I listen to her breathing, I feel the thumping of her once-broken heart, and every bit of it is a prayer.

The sacred and the everyday, winking at me in the dark.

I used to only write when I had something to share, but now I write a lot when there is something to feel, even if it isn’t something I plan to share. I wrote this blip because I wanted to give it words, to turn it around and around in my mind, to make it something I could keep and carry. Then this morning, I found this gem tucked into my Facebook memories, alongside a picture of my sweet sleeping babe:

She is the sweetest of captors. Her little feet need to touch me while she snoozes, and sometimes she wants my hand on her back, so I lie here and gaze at her and surf the Internet and read on my Kindle and do the precious work of just being present when needed. It is a gift to be able to right someone’s whole world by just being there. Simple, everyday magic.

And those parallel moments hit me with a bit of heft, a sudden reminder of the way we lose sight of things; the way we have to learn the same lessons over and over again, spiraling tighter and tighter with each pass as the truth of it comes more fully into view; the way everyone around us…even the tiniest and least of all…can be our greatest teachers. The sacred is everywhere, and once in a while, we can catch sight of it right there, winking at us in the dark.

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