When I was tucking in my four-year-old recently, she softly invited me to snuggle with her.
Honestly? I didn’t want to.
It was getting late. I was tired. I wanted to relax with my husband. It had been a long day with this strong-willed child. Stalling for time, I replied, “Well I still have my shoes on.” She answered, “You can take them off if you want to.” Okay, sweetie. Just for a minute.
She held the covers back for me and when I climbed in, she said, “You can snuggle closer if you want to.” Resigning to the moment, I snuggled closer. After I got situated, she told me, “Mommy, I love you bigger than everything there is.” My heart melted. I love you so much too Gracie!
A minute later I heard a whisper, “I love you to the moon and back several times. A million times.”
As I murmured my own feelings of affection, I realized that I’d almost missed it. I almost missed a chance to be loved on and ministered to by my daughter. To connect with her. Her tiny fingers gently moving in circles on my back, her precious words trying to express her love and appreciation for me. I wondered, How many opportunities like this have I missed?
Parents of young ones, I want to encourage you. I know you’re tired. Believe me, I know. I understand that some days you just can’t give another second. I have days like that too.
But, if at all possible, if you can push through for just a few more minutes, snuggle up. Whisper about your love for them. Tell them why you’re proud of them. Rub their backs. Allow them to drift to sleep with their love banks brimming over.
You’ll never regret it.