I remember when my kids were so young, and so uninterested in sleeping through the night. I remember dreading the night, because I just knew I wasn’t really going to sleep. I also remember wishing-away that season of life – just wanting my kids to grow up so that I could finally get a good night of sleep. Raising my kids from birth to about age five was this all-consuming, 24/7, I’m-trying-to-figure-this-out-as-I-go, and I-hope-I-don’t-hurt-myself-or-my-kids journey that felt endless.
But before I knew it Cassidy, Michael and Joshua not only learned how to sleep through the night, but they learned how to sleep in and they actually grew up into these amazing young adults. One of my favorite golden moments during our winter holiday break was a cold, drizzily walk that Aleta and I took with Cassidy and Michael. Josh wasn’t feeling the best, so we left him at home alone (something I could not have imagined years ago), and we went for a walk with our oldest kids. We shared our opinions about the latest movies we’ve seen, we laughed over our in-jokes, we laughed at ourselves and our family, and we just enjoyed each others company. As we walked along I remembered back to that sleepless night season of our life, when we would take our kids out on cold evening walks, and they would – to stay warm – wear their Costco Halloween costumes (a turtle and an elephant if I remember correctly) and we would try to get some of their energy walked out of them before bedtime. In this golden moment my kids weren’t dressed in their costumes, they were just wearing jackets, tall enough to look me in the eye, witty enough to share a laugh and enjoy the richness of the life God had given us as a family. God really is good, and to all of you parents of very young kids – kids really do grow up!