The Distance of Love

>> Friday, November 9, 2007

It’s late and Elizabeth should be asleep.

We allow her to read stories in our bedroom to tire her eyes and rest her mind. She promises Daddy she’ll go to bed soon.

The phone rings -- it’s Michael’s Dad. He and his Dad talk on the phone in the family room.

“I’m hungry,” she says to me. She’s done reading.

“I’ll let you have some cheese and milk, but you must promise to go to bed afterwards, OK?”


She fetches the cheese. I fetch the milk. She eats. She drinks. I wait.

“I have to be quiet,” she whispers.


“So Daddy doesn’t know I’m still up.”


After eating and tossing her cup loudly in the kitchen sink, she’s ready for bed.

“Do you know why I ask Daddy to take me to bed every night?” she asks.

“No, why?”

“Because I like him.”

“I like him, too. He’s a great Daddy, isn’t he?”

“He’s the best Daddy. I love him this much...” Suddenly she runs from the living room all the way into the family room -- demonstrating the great distance of her love.

Michael sees her and looks at her sternly. Shouldn’t you be in bed? he asks with his eyes while listening to his Dad. He doesn’t know why Elizabeth is standing there staring at him with a big grin on her face. She runs back to me.

“That’s how much I love him, Mommy,” she says breathlessly.

Me, too. That much and then some.

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