When I was a child I had an incredible imagination and with that came terrific nightmares. Many nights I woke up panic filled, wide-eyed, my heart beating loud enough that any robber in the house could hear; I was frighten to the point of feeling paralyzed. My peace of mind came when I would cry out to my parents.
DAD! Are you awake?
Yes, I am.
Don't go to sleep until I go to sleep, okay?
Okay, I won't go to sleep until you're asleep.
Are you awake?
Yes, I'm awake.
Don't go to sleep until I go to sleep okay?
Okay, I won't go to sleep until you go to sleep.
I'm here, go to sleep Corey.
Writing these words my eyes fill with tears. My parent's reassured me, night after night, they gave me their word faithfully and without ever seeming to be bothered by my need.
I would fall asleep trusting my parents were there to protect me from harm.
(1900s Plaster Paris statue of Saint Joseph holding the Chirst Child. When I bought this statue I found a small note carefully tucked into one of the folds. The note was of long ago... a written prayer... pleading for God's mercy to protect their son during WWII. I refolded the note and trustingly placed it back.)