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Chloe woke up and climbed into our bed at midnight. I was just drifting off to sleep after hours of restless and unsettled thoughts and had hoped that she would simply fall asleep. Instead, she loudly proclaimed that she was starving. I watched her lay sullenly for a minute or two and then, with an exasperated sigh, she once again declared her hunger. My mind was still far, far away and focused on the anguish that had laced these past few days. I couldn't stop thinking of my friend Annie, whose husband and little ones were discovering their first nights of life without her, of Gabriele's family and their loss, of Debbie and her loneliness without Skeeter, of the horror that unfolded in Boston, and of the explosive catastrophe in West, Texas. I thought of Jen and her vigil by Kevin's bedside and my prayers for his recovery. So much in the world not right. So many friends struggling. I had spent sleepless hours marveling at the strength that was surfacing amidst the grief and tumult of these tragic events----in the chasm of death, the loss of life, the devastation of a community and the ravages of cancer were signs of courage and faith. Yet I felt lost in the uncertainty and sadness life holds.I listened for a minute more to Ronnie's even breathing. Then I gently kissed Chloe's cheek and hugged her tight. Reluctantly at first, I pointed to the door and grabbed her hand. We quietly padded down the stairs and tiptoed into the kitchen; her happiness evident as we decided that Spaghetti-O's and hot chocolate would make the perfect late night snack. We talked about her friends and what she was doing at pre-school. We chatted about Fancy Nancy and Doc McStuffins. She giggled and proclaimed that this was fun and just as suddenly that she was tired. We danced through the kitchen and back up the stairs. The world once again seemed right. I tucked Chloe in and a tear fell from my cheek to hers as I realized the beauty of our adventure. We had just shared all in the world that is certain...the gift of this moment.
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