Yesterday, before the girls got sick, I finished putting the dishes away and ventured out to the playroom where I could see my daughters playing kitchen and tearing everything possible off the shelves. Usually my entrance is greeted with much fanfare on the part of my little ones. Cries of, "YAY mommy! Come play with Madeleine and Baby."
However, I walked out there and I was told, "No. No mommy go back."
I observed them carefully from the kitchen. There was no foul play, nothing naughty that I would disapprove of, they just wanted to play with each other. They just wanted their sister time.
Every morning the first sister to wake up goes immediately in search of the other. During Madeleine's nap Juliette hovers around the door to her room waiting for me to tell her it is time to go get her sister. When I finally do she leads the charge in and pokes her arms through the crib bars to wake up her big sister.
There is something so precious about their little feminie hearts. Madeleine likes to constantly reassure her sister that she is "beautiful" and "so pretty". She seeks to take care of her, comfort her when she is crying, alert me when her diaper needs to be changed, rub her head while she nurses, and hold her hand when she is sad. Juliette in turn shares everything she has with her sister and admires her, tries to imitate her and please her. As Madeleine grows in her faith this relationship will be crucial to Juliette growing in her own.
I love watching them walk around the house, holding hands and laughing together. It reminds me of my own sisters. When I was young my mom says that my sister and I were much the same way. Even when I was older and went away for sleepovers I would call my sister to chat and check on her.
Last night when Madeleine was sick I asked her if anything would make her feel better. She looked at her sister, smiled, and replied, "A new baby."
Today both of my little girls are sick with a fever and cough and have spent much of the morning snuggled up under their blankets and watching Barney together, the poor things.
In college I would think about the virtues of Mary and always got stuck on "angelic sweetness". Seeing my daughters now, I think I understand at least a very tiny bit.
When you bite into a piece of chocolate, or at least when I do, my body just kind of relaxes and enjoys how sweet it is and I think to myself, "I love chocolate."
When I see my sweet daughters together, even when I am so stressed out, I relax and say, "Oh that's why I'm doing all this. I love them."
There is something so pure and wonderful about Mary, the way she loves so intensely, that makes me relax the same way. When I think about the Blessed Virgin when I am feeling tense or upset or depressed my body relaxes in the realization that she loves me and will carry me to Jesus and I think, "Oh everything is going to be okay. I love her." She is my heavenly mother after all.
I actually have no idea what that virtue entails, but my response to sweetness is that it allows me to let go of all of my troubles and love. I have the feeling that that is what Jesus intended on the cross when He told John, "Behold your mother." and gave her to all of humanity as our Mother from then on. There is a lot of bad stuff that goes on in the world and sometimes we need to be able to just let go and love.