The gift of listening.

As my boy, tired and not yet ready to give up on his nap, flopped atop my prone self on the sofa to finish his doze, I gave up on the e-reader, closed my eyes, and listened.

To his breath even out into the deep sleep of a good nap.

To the whoosh of the wind as it blew through the trees.

To the gentle drumming of the rain against the windows in the living room.

To the stillness of the house, all the usual Sunday noises calmed by a wet afternoon.

To the purring of one of the cats, circling the sectional, trying to figure out how to get in on the sleeping action.

And to the occasional contented sigh coming from my son as his sleep restored him to his usual raring-to-go-to-the-park self when he awoke.

These afternoons are not common. The blessing to be able to pause, listen, and appreciate them is something I am very grateful for.

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