Monday night I announced to my children that it was time for bed. Sebastien, my six-year-old, is already an expert negotiator and analyst. I use these terms versus "Little Manipulator" because I desperately need to remain positive and hopeful in my thought process. I have three very challenging little individuals that I need to guide through childhood and must pace myself accordingly. Prayers are an integral part of our bed time routine. Sebastien knows this yet still tries to act silly and improvise on our tradition. Here's how our conversation went :
Sebastien: "Mommy, what if I have nightmares?"
Me: "You won't if you say your prayers with me. Let's ask the angels to watch over you and protect you."
Sebastien: "Well, they didn't protect me the last time I had a nightmare. They came too late!"
Me: "Hmm. Wasn't that the night you were goofing off and didn't say your prayers with Mommy, Isabella and Nathan?"
Sebastien: "Oh yeah! I forgot about that."
Me: "Well, let's try again tonight. We should say our prayers with respect and with a voice that the angels can hear. Are you ready to try again?"
Sebastien: "O.K. Mommy."
Here's our family prayer that we have adapted. The one I said as a child scared the heck out of me as it indicated there was a good chance of dying in your sleep. (I'm sure when it was first written, that was a valid concern. Thankfully we have come a long way thanks to modern medicine.)
Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the Lord my soul to keep
The angels watch me through the night
and keep me safe until morning light.
God bless Mommy, Daddy, Isabella, Nathan, Sebastien, Irais
Our Grandmas and Grandpas
Our Aunties and Uncles
Our Cousins and Friends
and our Teachers
and God Bless Rocco and Woody and Subira
(Pets from Family Members)
Sometimes we also add our concerns for the day, our hopes for tomorrow, or anything else we need to let go of prior to bedtime. These family traditions are special and I hope that one day my children will continue to use prayer at bedtime. It's a pleasant way to end the day. I need to do a better job of starting their day with prayer too. There have been times when a test or event made one of my children anxious. We would say a prayer in the car as we waited in the drop off line at school. It helps to know they are not alone during the school day, and that God and His angels are always on watch.
Have a Wonderful Day and Remember You are Never Alone!