Now that Norah's reading on her own, she and I will spend hours in the same room, but in complete silence. It's a beautiful thing. She needs to be engaged constantly and has always looked to me to entertain her. But, now Norah will read for thirty minutes to an hour, sometimes up to two hours while Avril naps or before we make her go to bed at night. That's a beautiful thing, too.
Norah will usually start upright but eventually, lay her head on my leg while I sit on the couch and look at the laptop. I will, naturally, start running my fingers through her hair or scratching her back with my free hand without even realizing that I am doing it. But, as soon as I stop, Norah shrugs her shoulder or pushes her head into my leg and grunts, meaning to make me start doing it again. And, I do.
I had been praying for a way to show my tough-as-nails five year old affection, trusting that God knew how I could reach her and that He would give me insight. Even in infancy, unless she was sick with a high fever, she was never one to settle into a hug or snuggle. I'd catch my kisses while we were reading books or nursing and she'd tolerate them, because those were the times she had to sit still with me. So, I am so grateful to discover this round-about way to her pour hours of affection straight into her often hard-to-reach heart.