As I type, my daughter lies sleeping next to me. We’ve been up since 5:00 A.M, stuffed stray shoes in backpacks, filled coffee mugs one last time, because my sister and her kids left to return to their home in VA while our town still slept. They were with us for over a week, a blessing we didn’t anticipate because we hadn’t counted on the winter storm that painted our city and theirs in clean, thick white. We couldn’t have been more pleased.
We did a lot in our eight days of togetherness–a little homework, a lot of Netflix watching, video game playing, late night giggling, drawing, even poetry reading. We took turns cooking our favorite comfort foods and tossing paper plates and napkins into a continually popping fireplace. We stared at one another’s messy hair and naked eyes and smiled comfortable smiles.
We are rich in family.
I told all six kids that after they’d piled into one room to spend their last night together. Rich as Croesus. Not everyone is. And just like with material wealth, those who live in abundance should seek out those who don’t, in order to bless them in small or big ways. My prayer is that some of what filled our house this week will spill over into other lives that intersect ours–to pay it forward, somehow.
In the meantime, I’ll keep warm this winter from inside out, my heart stoked with the orange embers of sister love.