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Daddy Debrief:  Late Night Contemplations

By David DeWitt

Children point out what’s important when your thoughts are mired in worry or uncertainty. They bring you back to reality. To what’s in front of you.

“Oh my God! You HAVE to come look at this! Right now! Come quick!” Finn will say once or twice a week regarding the sunset. “It’s the best EVER!” he’ll say.

Other times he’ll blurt out random bits of trivia when there’s a bit of silence that needs to be filled.

“Did you know that starfish push their stomach OUTSIDE of their body? Then they can wrap it around a clam and suck it out of the shell,” he said last night when there was a lull in a FaceTime conversation with Aunt Suzanne.

But my favorites of Finn’s random thoughts come at night. Usually after the lights are out and Erin is fast asleep or close to it. Sometimes I’m asleep and I’ll hear his not-so-tiny-anymore feet padding across the room to my bedside. And then, in the loudest whisper he can manage without actually speaking out loud, he’ll ask a question that has to be answered before his mind can rest.

“Daddoo. Can spiders crawl up your nose?”

“Is there a volcano on the moon?”

Often times it’s not a question. Just the classic, “I’m thirsty and/or hungry.”

Then there’s: “I hear a noise by the window. It’s probably the wind but it could be a ghost and don’t say ghosts are not real because they are.”

Lately it has been bugs that have somehow found their way into the house.

“There’s a lightning bug that keeps flashing and making me stare at it.”

A few nights ago I was far into dreamland when I was startled awake by the bedside whisperer.

“Daddoo, I can’t sleep and I’ve been doing Reiki on myself, but I don’t think I’m doing it right because it’s not working.”

He was silhouetted against the window and the moon was very bright so I couldn’t see his face, but I could hear he was very serious.

“Well, show me what you’ve been doing,” I said.

He moved his hands quickly from his head, to his hips, then across his chest. It kind of looked like he was doing the Macarena.

I had to take a breath. I didn’t want to laugh.

We slowly and quietly went through the Reiki hand positions together and I reminded him to take his time and not move his hands to the next position until he felt different in some way.

“But I might fall asleep before I’m done,” he said.

“That’s the point,” I said.

“Oh, right,” he said giggling. He scampered back to his bed.

He didn’t return that night.

A few days later I asked him.

“Hey buddy, how did the Reiki work out for you? Did you fall asleep?”

“Oh. Yeah,” he said. “That was several nights ago.”

“But it worked for you?” I asked.

“Yeah. Oh my God!” he said.

“What?” I said.

“Look at those peaches on the tree out there! We have so many!”

And away to the window he ran.