Life is so very precious. People are always telling me how quickly these days with little ones will pass. How I'll look back and wish I could rock them to sleep once again.
It's all about perspective.
When you're in the midst of baby years, it's hard to look past it. It's hard to even imagine them as being older.
And then, I get glimpses. Glimpses in the way my daughter tosses her hair or answers a question in a complete sentence. Glimpses when she does a chore, all by herself. Glimpses when she puts letters and sounds together. (She'll be reading before we know it!). Glimpses that my girl is not quite as little as she used to be. She's not all that much of a baby anymore. And glimpses that her brother is close behind. While he still, easily, falls under the definition of baby, he's creeping closer and closer to toddler-hood. He's learning, exploring, pulling himself up on everything, and mimicking the sounds we make. Even he is getting older.
These days will pass. The hard moments with two little ones will be distant memories.
And what will I have gained? What memories will I have stored up? What lessons will God have taught me?
Definitely some hard ones.
But there will be beautiful memories as well.
Because life is precious in our house.
Our house is one of dicipline, yes, but it's also one of laughter and love.
Love, and memories that I'll never forget. It can be so easy to get caught up in the busyness, in the to-dos. But, when we slow down, we realize the beauty of it as well.
My largest struggle, right now, has to do with my son and his sleeping patterns. He's fine, during the day, but his nights are really restless. He loves to use me as a pacifier, or demands that my husband (or I) hold him upright as he sleeps. This is really rough for us. It's not an issue we had with our daughter. She was really young when she started sleeping solidly through the night. Not so much with this one. Everyone has an opinion on how I should solve this issue. And I appreciate the points of view. But I truly want to do what is best for our little man and his individual personality.
And so, our son's sleeping patterns have been a matter of prayer for months now. At times I become rather obcessive about it. I feel bad that my husband hears so much about it. But that's something I love about him, he's an amazing listener. He doesn't always have answers, but he's there to encourage me and figure it out right alongside me. He's there to discuss, throuble-shoot, and pray thorugh these early-childhoood parenting years.
This morning, friends, I truly woke up with peace! It was such a marvelous feeling!
Peace that it all would get figured out in the end. That Jesus really does care about this need for sleep in our lives. And peace that we're really doing ok at this parenting thing. We're just taking things one day at a time, and troubleshooting as we're going along.
And you know what? We're doing some things right! I woke up this morning thinking about all the beautiful memories we've made together. I'll the moments I wouldn't change for anything. Moments that I truly treasure up in my heart:
1) Cuddling my little girl, far into the night, because she didn't want to be alone in her room.
2) Using baby carriers with both of my little ones, so that they could feel my heartbeat.
3) Reading books, lots of books, all day long. In our house, it's a given that our children will be book lovers, ha!
4) Our bedtime routine: Bath-time, Story-time with milk, prayers and songs. I love hearing everyone sing together, in the dark of Emma's room.
5) Racing back and forth across the back yard, little baby in arms, toddler running in the wind up ahead.
6) Building more Lego castles then I can count.
7) All the walks we've taken together, discussing each house, car, tree, flower, and pinecone we pass. No one makes you appreciate nature like a three-year-old on a walk.
8) And, for the sleep deprivation and frustrations, I'll never be sorry I cuddled my baby baby so much, rocking him back to sleep at 2AM and praying for people who came to mind in those early morning hours.
9) Trips to the playground, children's museum, and train depot. I love going on adventures with my little ones!
10) And pausing for one more hug, one more kiss, one more tickle. I can truly never have enough.
11) Singing, singing so many songs together.
12) And dancing, cranking up the music on the hardest of days and crazy dancing around the house.
Those, my friends, are moments I wouldn't change for anything. Because life is beautiful.
What memories do you treasure? How can you live more fully in today? What cares can you cast at His feet for the tomorrows?