Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Our Slow Mornings

When JaiseAnn was a newborn and for the few months that followed, we had some very lazy mornings. At that point, she didn't sleep in our bed, but would usually stir around 5 a.m. If I pulled her into bed with me to nurse,  I could get a few more hours of sleep in along with some cuddles. So JaiseAnn and I would "sleep in" almost every morning cuddled up together.

But the scale wasn't budging and I needed to get my hours of work in and I felt like I most definitely shouldn't be in bed. I should have been up before her. Working out. Working. Taking a shower. Getting dressed for the day. I needed to be doing something.

For a few weeks this really started to bother me. I wanted the sleep and the cuddles. I felt like I needed to be more responsible. I needed to be a mom and do more grown up and responsible things.

One day I was crying about this with my mom on the phone and I was telling her how I knew all these women that worked out in the mornings and I was just barely rolling out of bed at that time. My mom choked on her own tears and said, "If I could go back in time and cuddle with you in bed for a few extra minutes or hours in the morning, I would do it in a heartbeat. This won't last forever."

I heard her message loud and clear--as I was already aware of how much I would miss this stage. I uttered small and simple, "Okay." And that was that. I would stay in bed with my daughter until there was an absolute reason I had to get out of bed, even if that reason was taking her to kindergarten five years down the road.

While I was very aware of how much I would miss that stage, I had no idea how short it would be. It's already gone. JaiseAnn wakes much earlier now--her wake up time is now between 6 and 7, usually closer to the 6 side of things. Our mornings are still slow, but are much busier than they once were. We wake up together and climb out of bed. I make both of us breakfast each morning, JaiseAnn empties the bookshelf a half a dozen times, pushes her toy around the living room, and makes a beeline for the dog food every morning.

My very favorite scripture is Ecclesiastes 3:1--To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

As a mom, I've found that to be so true. For me, there was a time for me to cuddle my baby, who wouldn't be a baby for long. We both needed that--for a number of different reasons. And when the time ended, it ended. I will never get those moments back. I am so grateful I didn't sacrifice them for some illusion of more adequately used time--more supposed productivity. 

I only get to do this mom thing once. JaiseAnn will only be at each new stage once. If that stage requires cuddles, then I will cuddle her. If that stage requires playing make believe, we will play make believe. If that stage requires independence? Well, then I guess I will need to give her some space--and while my heart may quietly break when that time comes--I know that I spent those fleeting moments with her.

And you know what? My work gets done every day. I work out every morning. And we alernate between playing, running errands, and trying to keep the house in some semblance of order. And when those moments of "Will I ever wake up to a completely clean house ever again?" "Will I ever get to take a nap?" And so on.  I remind myself that there is a time and a season to everything. Especially in motherhood.

How do you approach each new stage of your life? Do you fight the change or do you embrace it?

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