As the sunlight softened to prepare for the unfurling of the pink veils of the waning sun and change the garb of the lake, the angels waited at the window for an invitation to enter.
They were waiting for the signal to bring the Divine comfort and stand nightguard by the little girl sobbing in bed. Her eyes laden with sleep and the dark circles under her eyes a witness to the exhaustion of the day.
Children fight sleep sometimes for in letting go they seem to have an innate knowledge that when the soul leaves their body it is vulnerable to all the evil forces if it is unprotected by the Divine.
Blessed is the child who drifts off into sleep with the complete security of the Divine protection while letting go of the soul to roam into safe places and be brought back in the morning intact and unhurt by the night wanderings.
I bent over her and kissed her forehead, soothing her with soft talk gently moving the curls away from her face. I asked her if she wanted me to call the angel to sit with her till morning……….
They were listening for an invitation to enter as the lake lapped at the shore wishing them dry cool land away from the heat of the day which as a last farewell clung to the board walk.
I began the recitation of the Ayet al Kursi***. I placed my hand on her forehead, as the words of the ayah flowed from my lips, I felt the angelic presence beside her. Her body relaxed and like a gentle caress, peace spread over her tiny face. By the time I completed the ayet al kursi, she had settled into the blankets snuggling against her stuffed toy, her eyes hooded heavy with sleep, tears forgotten as if someone far more powerful than me had reassured her. She drifted into sleep while her milk cup lay unfinished beside her……..
The angels had entered to guard her all night and shoo off all the pests that bring nightmares and want to take the sleeping soul to scary places.
I gently got up, and paused to watch her brother play a memory game at the dining table with no sleep in his eyes yet.
Outside the lake lapped at the edges of land and approved my action by shooting the last rays of the sun to light my path as I wound my way home.