“Mom?” Her voice flickers from the closet beside the front door to me in the kitchen, where I’m preparing food for our dinner. I dry my hands on a stray dish towel and walk to find my daughter. She’s standing on a stool in the closet, cradling an old, worn leather Bible in her hands. I gasp, without even realizing it, as I remember whose Bible that is. It’s not my husband’s, nor Aspen’s younger brother Derek’s. It’s mine.
I remember receiving the treasured Book in fifth grade, when I graduated from Kid’s Church back at my hometown in Nebraska. I lived in Nebraska from birth until I turned fifteen. My family and I left our beloved town behind and headed to a new land, also known as South Dakota. That’s where I met my husband. We got married a year after we both graduated, and after a few years of arguing about having children, Aspen was born. That wondrous day was nine years ago, and five years ago, my ...view middle of the document...
“Did Daddy write that?” Aspen asks. I laugh a little. Of course she’d ask. My husband is known for calling me ‘Beautiful’ and ‘Babe’, and other sweet names that still give me the chills as if we were back in high school, holding hands while walking down the halls. He’d depart me with a hug every single day, and I loved it. I loved him. I still do. As I spin my wedding ring on my finger, I tell her: “No, I did.”
“You? Why?” My daughter queries, standing up on tiptoe to see the sticker better. I smile at her, tucking a stray strand of light brown hair behind her ear. I’ve kept her hair down to her waist, and mine as well, because when I was a teenager, I tried growing my hair out all the time. Sometimes it worked, but sometimes, dead ends would be the death of my dream and my mother would have to trim my hair.
“God asked me to.” I reply. It’s the truth. When I was at a youth camp, the last one before we moved, actually, the preacher asked us to pray to God to give us a word in our heads to write down on a sticker. The word ‘Beautiful’ popped into my head. Now, if you knew me, you would know that my self-esteem in elementary and high school was horrible. I compared myself to others, and so, I thought I was the ugliest girl in school. When God gave me the word ‘Beautiful’, I denied it and thought it was my own mind. But, as He continued to tell me, I listened and wrote it down. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I will never forget.
“God did?” Aspen asks. Being my children, I raised them teaching them about God, and singing praise songs. I read them Bible verses before I sent them to bed, and my husband did the same. They both knew about God’s love and mercy, and understood more than I did at their age.
“Yeah. The Holy Sprit did, actually, hon.” I ruffle her hair with my head and close the Bible, setting it up on the shelf again.
“How did you know it was Him?” Aspen asks as she hops off the stool and shuts the doors behind her. I chuckle to myself as we walk into the kitchen together.
“I just did. I don’t know how. I just did.”