Whenever we go camping, one of my favorite things to do is to watch the stars and planets become visible in the night sky once the sun goes down. If there isn't much of a cloud cover and you get far enough away from the light pollution of civilization, the sky is absolutely magnificent.
Shooting stars are abundant and satellites are clearly visible, as they track across the sky.
Although we haven't been camping in a while, it always makes me relaxed whenever I go out in to our yard and stare up at the sky and the millions of stars, shining down on me. As it was in the beginning, it is now. And so it will be.
That simple fact fills my soul with peace.
When we transitioned our children out of their cribs and in to big beds, we made some changes to their rooms. We painted them. We purchased new linens. We added new pictures and decorations. And we created galaxies of stars across their ceilings.
The girls have multicolored stars, which are pretty during the day, but don't glow nearly as brightly as the boys' "white" stars. Still, we love our ceiling stars.
All of them.
Every night, when I go in to the children's rooms to tuck them in to bed, we gaze at the stars on their ceilings. The children have even named them. Two of the big stars they call Mommy and Daddy. Four of the smaller stars they've named after themselves. Others have been named for our friends and family or people who are in our hearts. For instance, our beloved Uncle Bill is up there and our friend Deana is up there, too. As well as Raymond and Rita and our dogs, Monty and Molly.
After I kiss the children goodnight and tell them that I love them and I'm so glad they came to live with me, it never fails that I don't look at the glowing stars on their ceilings and think about how tiny we are, in the grand scheme of the universe and how incredibly amazing it is that we are here, on the only planet within our entire galaxy that has yet been discovered, capable of supporting life. I'll stand at my children's door and watch them in awe, as they snuggle under their blankets and I sear in to my memory just how precious they are and how blessed I am. Blessed not only to be here, but to have them in my life.
And then I go hug and kiss my little ones again.
It's crazy. Who would have ever thunk that little plastic pieces stuck on a ceiling could trigger such deep philosophical introspection and gratitude?