March 13, 2005

Bedtime Hugs

The Monkey snuggled up in my arms, a story was read, and then, because she was missing her sister, off at a sleepover, I told her a story.

The storyline was simplistic, and, admittedly rather insipid. If I told this tale to anyone, oh let's say over 7, and asked if it were sellable, I would be laughed out of the room. The only positive attribute of the story was that it did have a beginning (a little girl has a magic stone which takes her to a secret world when she is mad/sad) a middle (the little girl's big sister goes away to a friends house, and the little girl goes to the secret garden) and an end (the little girl is lonely in the secret place. She leaves and finds her big sister, sitting all alone, sad, and lost. (The big sister part was added by the Monkey.) Little sister takes big sister to her secret place. The end. The little girl is a heroine, and even has her big sister back.

But there were two things the story had that made it special to the Monkey. The story was about her--her smile when I said the name of the little girl was her own name was wonderful to see--, and moms arms were wrapped about her. Comfort and the chance to star in her own wonderous drama.

In two years time I doubt she will have anything but the vaguest memories of the story. "Oh" she might say "remember when?"

But I think, I pray, there is more to it than this. The quiet peace at the end of the day, the warmth of my arms, the chance to be a hero, isn't this a cushion against the pains of tomorrow; the minor hurts and bruises that will surely come her way? A friend who acts cruely, a teacher who is "mean", a lost toy, a failed test. Somewhere, in the back of her mind, I hope the story rests, with many other bits of life, not as a memory but as an unrecallable knowing that no matter what her mother loves her, she is safe, and she is the hero of her own dreams.

Posted by Rachel Ann at March 13, 2005 09:51 PM

'she is the hero of her own dreams.'
What a wonderful thought! And not just for a child, but i think we all need to believe that deep inside us. It is our security, our motivation to live life the best we can and yes, we all need those warm, childhood memories, that secure blanket that we can tuck into even when childhood is long gone...
A truly lovely post!

Posted by: pincushion at March 14, 2005 11:52 AM

Wow. I haven't posted over at my own blog for a while, and to assuage my guilt I may just have to lift this one whole.

Or, better yet... I'll do this. (permalink)

[Google Wangle: Orthodox Jewish Father]

Posted by: FrumDad at March 16, 2005 12:30 AM

Beautiful post.

Posted by: Anna at March 19, 2005 05:54 AM

I got her through "Frum Dad" through "Picture My World." (Blog-surfing this morning.)

When I was a girl I had a crude doll called "Bird Friend" who I carried with me everywhere. When I went skiing with my parents, my dad made up Bird Friend stories on the ski lift. I don't remember the content of a single story, but just remembering the telling makes me want to cry. That story was told just for me.

Posted by: evenewra at July 17, 2005 05:39 PM
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