A part of new:
"I don't have friends in my wisdom yet," she says, a quiver in her voice. (She is learning: slowly. If only she knew how many friends are in her heart, could feel it. This single child. Tonight I rock her after warm milk and sing "Baby Mine" like I used to. Sometimes we all need that. Carry her to bed, hitting her long legs on the door frame. She pretends not to feel it because she said she'd be asleep by the end of the song. She isn't yet; I can see her eyes moving under the lids. Oh, how this child has grown.)
To bring her a sister or brother. A friend. But this body's blood won't allow it. This singleness. (Letting go.)
"I wish I didn't have to grow up. I wish I could still be a baby."
"You know, Nora, even when you grow up, you sometimes wish you could be little again."
"But, Nora, listen to this: You will always be my baby. Even when you are an old woman."
She giggles. "Did you know you get little again when you get old?"
She doesn't know how wise she is. Like most of us who aren't sure, who step hesitantly around the world's meanness. "Nora, I have been mean before. We all are sometimes." Kind is stronger. Love is stronger. Always wins. Fight with that, dear one.
God tells us to do two things, honey: Love Him and love each other. Just start there. Maybe they were just having a bad day--a no good, terrible day. That's when they need your love the most.
"Nora, listen to this, too: You are my friend, and I am telling you this: you DO know friend wisdom. Because you are my friend and I love you."
Please, let these bed time talks continue long into the years when she needs love and guidance the most (all years)--let the bridge remain intact. If we keep crossing it again and again, each day, it will remain.
"Promise me you'll always remember:
You're braver than you believe,
stronger than you seem,
and smarter than you think."