I have a little nighttime routine with my daughter.
After we read books and turn down the light, I snuggle with her for a while. Then I say to her, "Olivia, do you know how much I love you?"
And she says, "How much?"
I tell her:
I love you more than there are stars in the sky.
I love you more than there are fish in the sea.
I love you more than there is sand in the desert.
I love you every single day, all the time.
These days, she comes back with her own response, which varies a bit from night to night, but never fails to bring me immeasurable joy.
She says, "Mama, do you know how much I love YOU?"
And I say, "How much?"
Sometimes she stands up in the bed, jumps about, flails her arms upward and shouts, "THIS MUCH!"
She frequently says, "Mama, I love you more than Chuck E. Cheese is tall."
You see, she is picturing the guy who dresses like Chuck E. and walks around the "restaurant" giving kids high-fives. Apparently, he looks pretty darn big to a four-year-old.
And she says, "Mama, I love you more than Barney is purple."
My Lord, isn't she clever???!
And, then there is this line, which says it all:
"Mama, I love you more than chocolate cake."
Has there ever been any child, anywhere in the world, more spectacular than this one?!
What could possibly bring me more joy than being her mother.