It's amazing how much curative power resides in a single, heartfelt HUG!
Sleep has been an elusive friend lately and I find myself awake at odd hours; like now. When I gave up lying in bed (hoping to doze back off,) I slipped quietly into the hallway. Standing right at the door, waiting for me was Bella. And just beyond her, Gracie gave a lazy stretch and a half smile.
Usually, Bella's attentiveness is reserved for her Lord and Master - Frank. But something in her canine acuity signaled that the Lady of the House needed some affection this morning. She has pressed up against me constantly for the past half hour!
Big brown eyes have searched my face for some explanation as to why I'm awake in the middle of the night. Her massive tail thumps out a steady rhythm as I move around. (It's important to stay away from cabinets and bedroom walls. That sound could surely wake the dead!)
But I must admit, having her lumber over and plop down near my feet is comforting. And that feeling is doubled as Gracie squishes her irritating self next to my leg here on the couch.
The gift of nearness.
I suppose it's a lesson the Lord is teaching me right now. Yesterday I dashed over to Chik-fila for a salad and some chicken nuggets. As I sat in the drive through line, my phone began ringing.
Joy's voice said, "Mom, be careful what you order! I'm looking at you."
She and the babies had met Kristin and Harrison (the little fella she nannies) for lunch. Spencer, who was facing the window, caught sight of Poppa's car and alerted the rest of them. "Noni! Yook, it's Noni!"
So we waved like crazy people. You'd think we hadn't seen each other in a year. Then I did what every busy woman must do.
I completed my order. Drove through the line. Collected my food. Found a parking space. Left my food in the car and went inside for a HUG!
Let the chicken nuggets get cold - some things are more important than food!
I grabbed a chair and squeezed in next to Abby. Her face lit up. Her mouth opened in the most precious oval. Her little voice shouted, "NONO!" (She's getting there.) And she immediately reached out a chubby little hand to offer a tiny piece of chicken.
With only ten minutes to spare, my stop was quick. But effective! I drove back to the office rejuvenated and wearing a huge smile.
Last week we made an unplanned trip to North Florida to visit with my dad. He needed a hug. So my wise and generous husband rearranged his schedule to take me there.
Joy, not only a great mother and daughter, loves her Papaw too. So she packed up her little angels and we flew in some sunshine. Nothing earth shaking. Just the gift of nearness.
Dad has sounded much better since that visit.
Next week, it's pretty sure that I'll finally get to hold Noah. Each time I'm near Meagan, I rub her rounded frame and "talk" to him; telling him how excited we are about his soon arrival.
I even sing the signature Noni Greeting for him:
"I love you.
A bushel and a peck.
A bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck.
A hug around the neck and a bushel and a peck.
And that's how I love you! Boop. Boop. Boo-boopey-do!"
(Noah's great, great grandma sang this to his Noni. And his great grandma sang it to his mommie. I'm certain the "Greats" are watching from the edge of Heaven.)
If you've been feeling a bit discouraged for any reason, find someone to hug. (Preferably someone you know already!)
I can pretty well assure you that they'll thank you! You'll feel richer! And your day will improve greatly - with just a hug!