I’d fumble through the darkness, knowing from the cry it would be a night I’d not be leaving the nursery. When she was sick, all I could do was rock her and whisper a quiet hush into her sweaty forehead. My little one and I, washed over by the dim light of the nursery, would simply wait it out until dawn.
As a mother I am anointed with a great gift and responsibility. God placed his children into my care to nurture and show the way back to him—an especially daunting task when nights are long and I cannot fix what is hurting. During those sleepless nights, when my little ones were babies, I’d fix my gaze on the crucifix over the nursery door—the Lord standing watch over this sacred space. With energy spent and patience tested, I would be reminded, “I have the strength for everything through him who empowers me” (Phil 4:13). He provides all I need to fulfill my purpose, and gives me his Mother to be my example. In her grace she ministers to the frail. In love, she holds out her arms to the sick. As my mother she teaches me to do the same.
Our Lady of Lourdes intercedes for me and settles my soul so that I may settle my child’s. I now see Mary’s grace cast over us during those long nights. I see her love when our breathing would even out and my little one would be lulled to sleep. Mary would make way for the quiet nursery to become a sanctuary for moments I long for today.
—From The Magnificat / February 2016
Jennifer Hubbard resides in Newtown, CT. The younger of her two children, Catherine Violet, was a victim of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.