When Your Child Comforts You


“You okay, Mommy?” she said, pressing herself onto the arm of the overstuffed leather chair. Through my tears, I could see her wild-blonde bedhead, blurring into her pink Disney Princess pajamas.

“No,” I said with perfect honesty. “Mommy is sad,” my voice cracked.

I had just got the news that morning: a dear friend’s brain cancer had returned. And my heart felt broken for him.  For his wife, and his girls. And I kept trying to pray—but all I could do was cry.

And I didn’t want to cry in front of my daughter. Because she is two. And I didn’t want to upset her. But sometimes you just can’t hide how you feel. And so, I sat in the big leather chair that morning, with my face in my hands and cried, while my coffee got cold.

But she kept pressing closer to me, pushing her whole body under my arm, climbing into my lap, and gently brushing my long hair away from my face, so I couldn’t hide behind it. And I wanted badly to be alone. I just wanted to think, and pray, and cry.  But when you’re a mom, you don’t always get the opportunity to “just cry.” Even when you feel it’s the only thing you are capable of doing.

“Maybe you could sing Mommy a song?” I offered, trying to brighten the mood. She looked at me eagerly. And I expected she would sing me her favorite song by default, “Happy Birthday.” But that morning, I was surprised by a different tune.

Instead, she sang me one of the lullabies I wrote for her, which goes:

“Don’t cry little Selah, 

Don’t cry little girl.

Don’t cry little Selah,

For you know, He holds the world.” 

But she didn’t sing those words; she changed the lyrics. And I didn’t even know she could do that. But she changed the words just for me, and instead sang:

“Don’t cry little Mommy,

Don’t cry little girl. 

Don’t cry little Mommy,

For you know, He holds the world.” 

I lay my face against her chest, sobbing into her soft cotton pajamas. Holding her closer than ever before. And as I felt her heart beating against my face, I just felt so…small.

Just a little Mommy.

Just a little girl.

I was holding her, but really, it was as if she was holding me. With her warmth. With her tight embrace. With her big blue eyes searching my brown ones.

“You feel better now?” she asked, eyes wide as saucers. “You feel happy?”

“Yes. Yes,” a smile breaking forth from my face, “Thank you.”

And I realized, at that moment, just how much I needed her. Just how much she comforted me. Not just then, but all the time. Her presence is a constant comfort to me, and I didn’t see it until now.

My Sweet Child,

I know I am your Mom. And it is my job to take care of you, and keep you safe. To care for you. And I promise, I always will.

Long before you were born, I knew that you would cry, and I would soothe you. But I didn’t know that sometimes when I’d cry, you would soothe me, too. I didn’t know, when you were just in my womb, that the nights I’d hold you late into the night, you would be holding me, too. I knew I would hug and kiss you, but I never imagined how it would feel when you would hug and kiss me. I knew my hands would reach for yours, but I never imagined yours reaching for mine. I knew I’d sing you lullabies, but I didn’t know you’d sing them back to me.

I knew you would need me.

But I never imagined how much I would need you. 

How much I would need your nearness. Your embrace. Your voice. Even your lullabies.

Because at the end of the day, I’m really just a little Mommy. I’m just a little girl. And I forget, He holds the world.

And it wasn’t long ago, I was just your size, and saw the world through your eyes.

It still looks so very big to me. And I still get scared. And I still cry.

And the One who holds the world, also holds you, and holds me. And what’s amazing is that He also lets us hold one another. And it’s more precious than I thought.

I thought I knew what it would be like to be a mom—to be your mom. I thought I understood the gift, before I opened it. But I didn’t. Because you are a gift that seems to unfold into a thousand more, every day.

And I didn’t know until now, how much I needed you. But I do. I didn’t realize the comfort you bring me–and have always brought me since the day you were born. For so long, I thought you needed me close to you, but I really think, I need you close to me, too.

And for all the tears of yours I’ve dried, you have indeed dried mine, too.

And for all the happy tears I cried, I cried them all for you.

I will always be your Mom. But in case I don’t always let you see. I need you, just as much as you need me.



“So don’t cry little Mommy,

Don’t cry little girl,

Don’t cry little Mommy,

For you know, He holds the world.”


And please pray for my friend with brain cancer. He needs God to hold him tonight. 

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    • Marisa,
      First of all, thank you so much for your prayers for my friend! And I’m glad you can relate with the blessing of little ones comforting you. Much love!

  1. This is very touching, got me crying! I love how God uses our children to touch us and show us truth.
    Thanks for the tear-jerker! 😉
    I have a family member that just got a bad cancer diagnosis, so I can relate. Prayers!

    • Tamara,
      So sorry to hear of your family member’s bad diagnosis. May God bring comfort through His Holy Spirit! At the same time, I am so thankful He comforts us through these little children too. He is truly so good to us. Thank you for sharing!

  2. Oh Bekah what a beautiful thing little,sweet, Selah did for you. She is full of compassion, even at age 2! God has indeed given you a special girl – You are a blessed woman!

  3. Pingback: When Your Child Comforts You | Gentle Parenting of WNY