An Exchange

Friday brought impending doom, an exchange that took the wind from my sails and replaced it with fear.

Saturday brought an old familiar gloom, an exchange that took a personal sense of accomplishment and replaced it with a slap in the face.

Sunday brought an old familiar Friend, an exchange that took admonishment and replaced it with a song of hope and a reminder of Love’s presence.  Love settled in that sanctuary as warm and vibrant as the sun shining through the stained-glass windows.  The duo behind the pulpit sang “He’s Already There“, reminding me to not worry about tomorrow.  A medley of songs that hold personal significance from childhood followed, reminding me that Love’s presence was with me then, is with me now and is already there tomorrow.

Monday brought impending victory, an exchange that blew anew the wind in my sails and the certain knowledge that the obstacles of Friday were removed.

Monday brought a four-year-old messenger bearing Love’s presence with Truth, charm, challenge, openness and giggles.  Her beauty for me is not in her physical characteristics, though she has bright blue eyes and golden hair.  Her beauty for me is not in her intelligence, though she will astound you with her quick wit, her fiery delivery of observations and knowledge.  Her beauty is what I cherish even though there are toddler meltdowns and childish standoffs.  To me, her beauty comes from Love’s presence in and through her.

Sharing a glider rocker, with the toddler as my human blanket on top of me, we watch together a modern version of Fred and Daphne, Velma, Shaggy and Scooby.  The toddler reminded me that the monsters weren’t real, “nothing on TV is real”.  Velma’s name made the toddler think of a member of the family, so we began reciting names of family members and their relationshipsto the toddler.  She got them all correct.  To tease her, I asked who I was [to her].  “You’re my friend.”

In truth, I am her great-aunt, but for her to think of me as a friend is greater than any other place in her life.  I know for a toddler to consider you as a friend, it is an honor. It is a relationship of trust, love and acceptance.

As time passed, the TV became less entertaining.  As my hair stylist, she commanded me to lie down in the floor.  As I maneuvered to floor level, she then asked me if I could lie on the floor.  It was a moment where I paused in my response.  We have played on the floor many times; she knows I can lie on the floor.  I was searching for the answer to her question, for I knew her direct question was not the real question.  Before the answer came, the real question burst out, “Do you sleep?”  I have a feeling that she was trying to work out in her mind of how I actually get in the bed … or perhaps who tucks me into bed … or simply if I sleep.

In truth, she is in a constant conundrum; she observes me doing adult things but yet I am of child-sized stature.  She enjoys the freedom and power I have as an adult which she doesn’t have as a child; it also frustrates her that I have that freedom and power yet she does not.

“Why are you putting your shoes on?  Are you leaving?  You can’t leave until they come to get me and bring my new puppy.  I want you to see her.”  My answer to her included a question of my own.  “I’ll stay as long as you want me to.  Do you want me to stay and play with you until you leave?”

In truth, she is very much aware that if shoes are being put on, then that must mean that someone is leaving.  In truth, she is also aware that I have often left before her and have often left while she is down for a nap.

An old familiar Friend sent a four-year-old messenger to remind me that it is a divine gift to be considered a friend over a familial tie.  The messenger reminded me that when you love someone, you want to know all about them.  The messenger reminded me that when you love someone, you want to spend time with them.  The messenger reminded me that when you love someone, you remind them the monsters are not real.

An old familiar Friend reminded me that tomorrow is already sorted; that HE calls me a friend; that HE wants to know me and wants to spend time with me; that HE is not offended by my conundrums in life; and not to be afraid of the monsters in life.

Love’s Presence always brings an exchange, an exchange for that which kills, destroys and devours for life, love and hope.  The Presence of Love settles as warm and vibrant as the sun shining through stained-glass windows, creating a sanctuary when the winds of adversity fills your sails.  The Presence of Love replaces gloom with a song of hope.

And one last note, if she were reading this post, she would correct me. In actuality, she is just three.   She would also quickly tell you that her birthday is just days away and then she will be four years old.  She is a stickler for truth.


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