"Mom, remember the night I couldn't fall asleep?" Nic asked recently.
There was no one time that immediately sprang to mind, and I said so. Truth is, Nic didn't sleep through the night with any kind of consistency until about third grade. He persisted.
"You know, that night where I tossed, and I turned, and I ended up at the foot of the bed."
OH. THAT night. And I do remember him at the foot of the bed, finally asleep.
"How old were you, Nic? Do you remember?"
*shrug* "First grade, maybe?"
"And why couldn't you sleep?"
"I was just waiting for morning."
The phrase jars me in a way Nic's random proclamations often do, and haunted me in the early morning hours as my little one climbs into bed with me and falls asleep. Lately, he's needed me more at bed time, and often wanders in the wee hours like a little ghost looking for me. And this morning, I realize with a great deal of dismay, he's grinding his teeth in his sleep.
Nic has ground his teeth in his sleep ever since he's had them. Gabriel has not. Until now.
So again, I find myself seized with fears in the darkness, wondering yet again if I am doing enough for him, what am I missing? What else do I need to be thinking about? Has the bus stop ruined him for life? How can I fix this? Is he already broken beyond repair?
I think of people I knew, and one person in particular who my mom said was a troubled soul.
I thought for a moment. "He was always a troubled soul, mom."
She was quiet a moment. And agreed.
So to what depth troubled? To what extent broken?
I find that I, too, am waiting for morning.