I was tucking my kids into bed tonight. It's one of my favorite daily rituals as it usually ends the day on a nice note, no matter what has happened all day long. We read stories, sing songs, snuggle, and I tickle their face or rub their hair, depening on the kid. Anyway, it's a time I treasure as a mom. Most of the time.
Tonight, I was reading Jari a story he received from a friend of mine from Australia. It was about all the animals in Australia and he had a story to tell about each one. For each 10 word page, I received a 10 minute documentary about the animals. His favorite was by far the platypus. And when I told him he got the book when he was a baby like the joey, he giggled and laughed and it was a wonderful moment. As he finally settled down to sleep, I started to tickle his face ever so lightly...his chin swept ever so softly with the tip of my finger never fails to relax him. I watched his face as he became ever more relaxed, wondering why I was blessed with such a beautiful child, when he pulled my fingers to his cheek and started to caress my fingers. He hugged my arm tight and then placed my fingers back on his face. And it is moments like these that I feel blessed to be his mommy...no matter what they day has held for us, the end of the day brings me so much comfort, peace, and love.
And then, I headed to Kaeden's room. He is overly excited about our 4th of July party we're holding tomorrow and can't stop talking about the jobs he plans to undertake and the games he plans to use to entertain our guests. Hearing his excited chitter-chatter makes the hard work of a party (when I'm feeling a bit sick and weepy) 110% worth it. He just can't wait and his animated voice proves to me that I am teaching my kids the traditions of an American culture within the confines of Belgian soil. It means a lot to me. As I told him I didn't want to talk about the party any more or he would be too tired to have fun, he started to rub my back...this is something he does extremely well, and I can't help but fall victim to his massage. As I lay on his bed with his hands working their magic on my back he asked me "Mom, do you know how much I love you?" I responded with "Uhm, all the way to the stars and back?" which is his normal response. "Nope. All the way to hell and back!" he lovingly answered. My body shook in laughter...I guess I can count that a good thing??!
Anyway, my little angels who are usually not so angelic (maybe that's where he got the devil theme from??!) throughout the day are now snuggled in bed awaiting the sun's rays in the morning. And for now, I feel so completely fulfilled. This is what life is all about.