“Oh no, Baby Rae, it’s dead,” Madeline said.
Rachel looked at the smushed bug on the pavement and said, “No, it’s not.”
Madeline, ever the empathetic one, patted her sister’s shoulder. “It’s okay, but it is dead.” She looked at me for confirmation.
“Yes, I think it’s dead. We just have to handle bugs carefully because they’re so much smaller than us.”
“I ‘sowry,'” Rachel said to the deceased.
“Ladybugs don’t understand apologies, especially dead ones,” Madeline pointed out.
Rachel crouched low and looked at what now looked like a red smear on our patio and gently started blowing on it.
Then she began to shout, “It’s alive, Mommy! I ‘blowed’ on it, and now it’s crawling.”
Sure enough the ladybug was creeping away from us, his smushed body peeled from the pavement.
“Wow,” I said. (I really thought that bug was a goner.)
Madeline watched the ladybug scuttle away, and then smiled. “It’s a miracle,” she said. “A real miracle.”
With the sun shining down on us, the baby digging in the dirt, and my two girls marveling at Lazarus the Ladybug, I whispered a quick prayer of gratitude, “Thank God for small miracles, and thank God for the children who recognize them.”