Thursday, November 09, 2006


We’ve had a string of “those days”–days of constant fussiness where the most I managed to get accomplished was getting dressed and making dinner. Then we had a couple of “those nights”–Gabriel wakes up at 4:00am happy as a lark, cooing and gurgling and ready to play. Fortunately, now that he has enough head control to sit up with my help, he seems to think we’re “playing” when I sit up and put him in my lap, even though my head keeps lolling to the side as I fall in and out of semi-wakefulness. While I sit with my son in our dark bedroom, I often find myself thinking about religious orders that wake at night to pray the Liturgy of the Hours, or saints like John Vianney who survived for years on two or three hours of sleep a night–in his case he was in such demand by his parishioners, particularly in giving counsel in the confessional, that sleep came second to prayer when he was finally able to retire for the evening. My need for sleep may perhaps be one of the many guaranteed signs that sainthood still lies far beyond my grasp. For the past several days, sleep has won out over my semi-scheduled prayer times. Whenever Gabriel slept, I slept. I tried to fall asleep being mindful of God’s presence, remembering a comment from (I think) St. Therese of Lisiuex. She noted that because she often fell asleep during her scheduled devotional times, she would console herself with the thought that just as earthly parents love their children just as much asleep as awake, so too must our Heavenly Father love us just as much asleep as awake...!

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