Bedtime at our House

I read this quote just a few minutes ago and bowed my head in shame.  I often get so frustrated with my kids at bedtime... the opposite of this very sage piece of advice above.  You see, the last fifteen minutes before bedtime is often the most stressful of my entire day.  I believe my kids are in some sort of contest to see how rotten they can be and how quickly they can make Mama frustrated before she loses her cool.  Are your kids like that too?  There are always a dozen reasons to get out of bed... another request for water, someone's too hot, someone's too cold, he needs another potty trip, Lila needs Bitty Baby, where's Parker's blanket, please turn off the fan, can you find my favorite song?  One wants the door open and one wants it closed, he has his nightlight so Lila wants hers too, please one more book, scratch my back, etc.  Plus, my kids seem to bicker and pester each other until one of them is frustrated and the other is in tears.  And I am both frustrated AND in tears.

But something magical happens once they settle into bed.  As much as they fuss and fight during their waking hours, they refuse to sleep apart from one another.  We have a toddler bed plus a full-size bed in Lila's room, and Parker has a twin plus a trundle in his own.  They can spread their arms and legs out, have their respective bed all to themselves... but no.  Somehow they always migrate to one another before they fall asleep.  Lila begs to sleep in "da big bed" in her room with her brother, and Parker calls to us from his room until we give up and send him in to sleep with his sister.  Girly bedding and all, he could care less.  He's snuggled up with his built-in friend, and that's all that matters.

Tonight when I went in to peek at them (after all was quiet), this is what I saw.  I kissed them both, silently thanked God for these precious angels of ours, asked for forgiveness for being so short with them as I tucked them in tonight... and then I grabbed my phone to take a quick photo.  I couldn't help but share my two sweet babies with you here.

And no, the photo isn't sideways.  They were actually lying crosswise in the bed just like this.  Lila often has her leg thrown over Parker's hip just as she did tonight, and he usually has his arm around her tummy.

Parker spent a week at his grandparents' house in North Carolina last month.  He told me he slept with a pillow behind his back to compensate for Lila not being there with him.  And Lila slept with Chris and me, because she couldn't bear to sleep alone either.  It reminds me of sharing a room with my sisters years ago... when I moved away, we all slept with pillows behind us to fill the space in the bed left by the other sister.

I pray that they always stay this close as they grow up.  And that God will give me the patience to hold on during the frustrating evenings... because these sweet blessings come afterward.

xo, friends.  Sleep tight.