|a print that hangs by my bed|
I'm a good sleeper. I go to bed on the late side, after writing and reading for two to three hours, and when I put down my book and turn out the light, I turn to my side and go to sleep. I wake up seven or so hours later when the alarm clock light begins flashing, and I have no trouble turning it off and then lying there doing a short meditation. I know, this is a blessing. This morning, though, I woke up at exactly 4 am in full thought, and it seemed like the thoughts were exactly the same as they had been when I'd fallen asleep. I had gone over the day, an upsetting one, actually, worried for my boy Oliver who is so unhappy at school. As those of you who work the early morning shift know, 4 am is the time when all worries are magnified and seemingly insurmountable. They don't call it the darkest hour before dawn for nothing. It also seems that telling oneself that worrying at 4 am is stupid is useless, and after fifteen minutes or so of rising terror that might have, could have, would have tipped over into despair, I got up and crept into the boys' bedroom and over to Oliver who was sleeping peacefully. I stood beside the bed and touched his exposed hand, curled softly on top of the cover. He rustled a bit but continued to breathe deeply, so I stood there with my hand on his and breathed deeply, my eyes closed. I prayed for peace for him when the sun rose, for strength for me to love and be compassionate. I prayed for ease while he continued to breathe, in and out, his face still the baby's that I'd rocked every night and sung to years ago. When I left the room, light was curling around the blinds, but I climbed back into bed, closed my eyes and went back to sleep.
This is a mother's story. I have done this same thing, stood at my son's bedside, hand on his forehead, praying for peace, for ease, for the path he travels to turn smooth. It is agonizing. But I am glad you felt easier after standing over your cherished boy. I have so much faith in him. He is going to be fine, I promise it. He has such a rich spirit, and he will find his way. Just support him. Help him with school however you can. Make sure he knows how extraordinary he is. I know you do all this. It will all come together. It will.ReplyDelete
I hate that he is so unhappy at school and I feel that knife in the gut that you surely must as well. What I know (and hold on to with Lola who is much like Oliver), is that your steadfast support, understanding, empathy and love for him will be his beacon throughout this time and when he is many years past it and looks back to wipe his brow in relief, what he will see is that love light still shining for him.ReplyDelete
4am is a bitch. I am glad that you were able to find some sweetness in it and then go back to sleep.
beautiful post, E.ReplyDelete
Kario is right--4am is a bitch. It's great that you were able to take that time and be IN the moment with Oliver, rather than letting the worries just eat you up.ReplyDelete
So beautiful. So very, very beautiful even in the sadness.ReplyDelete
You are such a lovely writer.ReplyDelete
And oh, how this short piece made me miss my dear mother.
4am is the hardest time, but you turned it into something beautiful, a cherished memory. Thinking of you and Oliver...ReplyDelete
and I must say, I love that print.
That's what I call a "night watch" .... What are we going to do when they aren't just down the hall?ReplyDelete
Oh, I do hope it was a decent day.ReplyDelete
Kids have no idea how much their parents worry, do they?ReplyDelete
Yes, 4 am is definitely the time for magnified fears and heartfelt prayers. May yours be answered, for your lovely, gifted, boy. I'm sorry he's having a tough time in school. They can be good places for some kids, but for others, they can really snuff the spark of learning and creativity, because they just aren't set up to recognize and nurture different learning styles (not to mention the active needs of growing children, especially boys.) Fortunately he has loving and intelligent and creative parents, who can make up for a lot that is lacking in his school life.ReplyDelete
A beautiful write, Elizabeth.
Here is the thing: He is awesome. His dream, which you posted? It, too, is awesome. Where things are difficult is in the world's stupid reluctance to allow and celebrate his awesomeness. But YOU see it, and it is there, and those are the things that matter. It is the stupid world we should worry about: poor world, will it ever wake up?ReplyDelete
But it will, or at least the parts of it that matter will. And you and he can just know this, until the world realizes what's going on.
those four am wakeups turn into the worst mornings for me. tempered with the gratitude that it isn't four am anymore. i always imagine the demons are sticky fingers that peek around corners at four am. ready to stick. for some reason, i still see their smudges in the mornings.ReplyDelete
(my mom tells me this never goes away. so there's that.)