My husband was out of town last week, tuning pianos in Pendleton. When he's away for the night, I let the grandkids (they live upstairs) take turns sleeping with me. It was eight-year-old Andrea's turn on Tuesday night. She came downstairs to my house and we got into our jammies, laid in bed and talked. And talked. She has a train of consciousness that speeds down the track like the out-of-control engine in The Polar Express. I just lie back and listen until she runs out of steam.
"Grandma, did you know that a girl in my class moved? I think maybe it was because she was mean and didn't have any friends. Her parents never taught her the difference between right and wrong. Mom says that some kids don't have parents that teach them the right things. But my mom and dad always try to teach me what God wants me to do. And Grandma, I can jump rope really fast now. And the dentist thought I was really brave when I got the shots for my cavity. And..." We ended up praying together for her former classmate.
The next night, five-year-old Joshua shared my bed and the deepest concerns of his heart.
Joshua: "Grandma, did you know that sometimes when I toot, I can make the toot go back inside me?"
Grandma: "Wow, that's really something!" (I was thankful it was dark so he couldn't see my face, and he didn't seem to feel the bed shaking with my contained laughter.)
Joshua: "I have growing pains in my leg right now."
Grandma: "Do you want me to rub your leg?"
Joshua:"No, I want to grow! Sometimes I can grow by just stretching and squeezing my ears and my nose and my neck without even using my hands. Did you know snot is the medicine that keeps my throat from hurting when I try to stretch it?"
Grandma: "Well, I always wondered what snot was for!"
I know the day will soon come when Andrea and Joshua no longer think it's a treat to sleep with Grandma, but for now, I'll continue to enjoy the insights they unveil as we share a pillow.