Our two youngest girls, Ella and Ava, have always shared a room. For most of their lives they have even shared a bed. Not because we didn't have two beds in the room, we did. But, because they wanted to sleep together. They were always together. A few months ago we bought them bunk beds and they LOVED them. They would start off in their own beds, but at some point during the night Ava would end up in the top bunk with Ella. Every night.
Ella would also hold Ava's hand every morning as they got on the school bus, and every afternoon when they got off the school bus. This morning, as I sat on the front porch with my 6 year old little princess awaiting the bus, she was wearing her green #forElla bracelet.
"My friends don't like to talk to me about Ella because they're afraid they'll make me sad," she said.
"Does it make you sad to talk about her," I asked.
Her ponytail slapped each cheek as she quickly shook her head from side to side. "No! But, maybe they'll see my bracelet today and ask me what it is and I'll be able to tell them all about Ella," she said with a bashful little smile.
When I asked her what she wants everyone to know about Ella, with excitement she said, "we had a 'secret sisters' handshake."
"Really?" I asked. "Can you show me?"
"No," she responded. "It's a secret. And you're not a sister. But, it was about how we're sisters and have the best family ever."
I laughed for a moment, but soon noticed her staring up at the sky. She had that 6 year old lost in thought look on her face, so I just sat quietly and waited for her to speak. What she said really surprised me.
"I wonder what Heaven feels like?"
Huh? Whoa. I've thought about what Heaven might look like. I've even tried to imagine what it might sound like. But, I've never thought about what it feels like.
"What do you mean, baby?" I asked.
"Well, it feels cold outside this morning. I wonder if Heaven is warm. Or do you think it has a nice, cool breeze?" I could almost see her thoughts as she tried to help me understand what was going through that sweet little head of hers.
"I think Heaven is perfect," I said.
She smiled, looked at me and said, "Ella was a great sister. And now she's in Heaven where it's perfect. I think she's happy there. And when I get there, we're gonna do our secret sisters handshake."
And with that, we heard the roar of the school bus as it approached our house. "Bye daddy. I love you!" she said as she gave me a hug and kiss and ran toward the bus.
"Bye, baby girl." I said. "Have the best day ever!"