I mentioned that Zach turned 21 last year, and in turn his transition into adulthood ended the over night nursing care he’d enjoyed for nearly two decades. We maintain connections with as many of his former caregivers/nurses as possible, as they became somewhat like family.

Since Zach still needs to be fed by Gastro-Tube 4 times daily, I will often prepare his bolus and morning medications when I awake around 5:30am. Although his Dad feeds him a little later, I find that going into his room before daylight gives me a better shot at an uneventful bolus, meaning that Zach doesn’t wake up and ask “What’s the Plan?” unable to go back to sleep.

There is something Divine about being in the presence of another person sleeping. Watching someone’s body and mind recover while completely at rest is a rare privilege, and this is especially true when watching my son sleep. For one whose default tends to be anxiety and excitability, his peaceful slumber is very comforting.

A few mornings ago, while feeding Zach in the dark of early morning, he repositioned himself as I accessed his G-Tube but never opened his eyes. He was still, and looked so peaceful.

”Almost done” I thought to myself after connecting the last of 6 large syringes and pushing the liquid nutrition straight through to his stomach. He hadn’t flinched and I was relieved to be nearly “free” to make an exit without him waking up.

Upon finishing, I removed the Y-connector from his port and covered him back up with his blankets. So rare that he wouldn’t wake up during this process. As I quietly reached for the door knob while balancing the tray of empty syringes, I heard Zach’s voice “I love you Mom.”

I turned around and could see a small smile on his face where the hallway light crept in through the crack in the door. He still seemed to be sleeping but his words and expression let me know he had what he needed, and was grateful.

It was one of those rare moments where nothing else needed to be said, or heard. I was present, still and overwhelmed with gratitude that my son whose physical body had struggled so mightily for survival was at rest. And that without really being conscious, he knew I was there, and that he loved me.

Love just doesn’t get any more sincere than that. And as I left his room and closed the door, I knew that no matter what might happen in the course of the upcoming day, I had already been Blessed with the miracle of Zach’s love and life which was far brighter than accomplishing any of the tasks on my to do list that day.

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