I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo and the Five Minute Friday writers today with the prompt “exhale.”
I squish in beside her on the toddler bed that isn’t made for adult sized limbs and she smooshes her face up next to mine, so close her eyelashes tickle my nose and her breath exhales softly onto my skin. She asks for a story – this new tradition of words we’ve started where I turn her day into a princess adventure.
I talk quietly, trying to remember how to tell a story instead of writing one and as I stumble, she snuggles. The girl on the go, the one who never sits still, she inhales and exhales to the fractured rhythm of my storytelling and settles more deeply into her pillow. When the story ends – always with the beautiful princess going to bed and having happy dreams of her adventures – she grabs my hand. Unwilling to sink into slumber alone in this season, holding tightly even as she whispers a request for me to sit on the floor so she can have more room.
I’ve never been more in tune to the sound of anyone breathing like I am at bedtime with a toddler. I know when she starts to relax, when the space between inhale and exhale lengthens into soft sighs and finally…finally…sleep.
It requires that up-close, eyelash tickling relationship to know her by her breathing. And I lay on her floor craving with my whole heart that same closeness with God – the One who brings the dead to life with His exhale. I want to lean in so closely that the smallest parts of me brush against all He is and to hear Him whisper His story over my life. And I’ll breath deeply again.
Jennifer Frisbie says
This is just beautiful, Crystal!
Jen Underwood says
great post, friend! I am doing this (the snuggles) in the AM with my girls. To help start our days with a better attitude. It is WORKING! Hugs! (and Let’s go Nats…)
Deanna Wiseburn says
Kelli Moore says
“She inhales and exhales to the fractured rhythm of my storytelling” what a beautiful picture this creates in my mind. What a beautiful relationship you share with your daughter. May it be that we would have such a relationship with our Father. Thank you for sharing.
Pat Baer says
I love this, Crystal. I shared your link on our Attentive and Attuned facebook page – it fits perfectly with the premise of the book. Thanks for exhaling truth and life here today.
Amy Boyd says
I pray too I will learn to lean in that closely to my Father. What a beautiful thought.
Karrilee Aggett says
Oh my stars, girl! This is all kinds of beautiful! I treasure those bedtime memories… I miss them so and I know it’s not easy to remember NOW that you will miss even the night time fights and the I don’t wanna go to beds… but you will! 😉 Love you, friend!
Jolene Underwood says
So sweet. Love these type of precious, precious moments.
Nancy Smith says
Crystal, pack this one away in your heart- for when she’s not a toddler anymore. Those sweetheart moments with our babes provides fuel to continue parenting when it gets tough! Those are the things I had to look back on and remember why I was doing the parenting in the first place. Now I experience that with my grands, an exquisite difference!
Ah … the breath we breathe …
Michelle Sonotpopular says
Beautiful post- thanks for sharing! Happy Friday!
Holly Solomon Barrett says
Oh, to be close enough to hear His breath. Lovely post, Crystal!
Amen! The rhythm of inhaling and exhaling is so beautiful and when you enter in it feels like peace. Praying we all feel God’s inhale and exhale in our lives daily! Blessings, Mary
Marie Gregg says
This made me imagine what it would be like if Jesus tucked me in and turned the stress of my day into a story about a warrior-princess. Thank you for reminding me to view myself and my life through His eyes. Eyes of grace and love.
Amen! If we will feel like that about the breathing of our own children, can you even imagine how much deeper He feels about us? This is absolutely beautiful, friend!
Lisa-Jo Baker says
“I’ve never been more in tune to the sound of anyone breathing like I am at bedtime with a toddler.” – yes yes yes SO MUCH TRUE here. Loved this one Crystal. So grateful for you.
Courtney Lynn Harris says
This is just beautiful, Crystal! Love the story about snuggling with your precious daughter, and about how you are a precious daughter yourself.