There is something sacred about the weight of her body settled into my lap tonight,her breathing synchronized with mine. There is something prayer-like in the feel of his baby soft cheeks under the palm of my hand as we watch a baking show together, curled up on the couch. I twirl a fingertip mantra in the long spirals of her hair and I feel the presence of a god that eludes me in any church.
I want to freeze time. I want to live in this moment… here, protected by this couch, by the confines of these walls. I want to stay within this sanctuary of hand-printed walls and floor cheerios, of dog hair and dirty clothes, of throw pillows and fleeces made into forts and unidentifiable goo on the kitchen floor. Even with the chaos and the frustration and the exhaustion… because right here, I can protect them. Here, they are safe.
And I know that I can’t protect them… can’t really protect them from a world that is as relentless in sorrow and grief as it is in joy. I know that there will always be car accidents and skin cancer and brain tumors and diabetes. I know that it’s my job to teach them how to live, to find the joy within the sadness, to seek out the beautiful moments encapsulated in chaos. It’s my job to teach them to be unafraid…
Yet I’m afraid, especially of late. Afraid of losing them, of them losing me… and of the very idea that there is no controlling anything, really. We are all so very fragile… mere wisps in the universe that even the strongest love can’t protect.