Two weeks ago Pretty Girl's life was miraculously spared.
Our family was attending a local Halloween event. After unloading all the kids from the car, I rounded the back to pull out supplies. As I reached the back of the car, I realized not all the kids had stayed on the side of the road (next to the car) as we ALWAYS instruct them to do.
Pretty Girl was standing in the middle of the road, lovingly staring off across the street at the festivities. She was blissfully unaware of the car four feet behind her that had just come to a sudden halt.
I didn't sleep well most of last week. Lots of turning and self loathing and a million ways I could have prevented this. Many thoughts telling me, "You have too many children!" "How do you expect to be a good mother if you cannot watch them all?" and most prominently, "This is your fault. You should have been there. You failed."
The driver of the car turned out to be a distant neighbor. When I talked to her later, she told me in the moments before the near-crash, she felt an unknown slap come from behind her head and a direct voice that made her look to the side of the road where Pretty Girl was standing with her brothers. The voice told her to pay attention - at which point Pretty Girl walked right into the road.
I have no answers for why some children are spared and some are not. But I know our days and years are numbered from an eternal, solemn perspective. And if Pretty Girl still has more work to do and more to teach her parents, then there could also be hope of God's confidence in my abilities as a mother.