One of the nights when you knew Toddler was going to make me want to pull my hair out.
There’s so much on my mind right now. Moving, selling or renting, work, painting, renos, housework, yoga, freelance work, vacation (prep and making money to cover it), bills, forms, money, taxes, health… life in generally is more than all consuming at the moment and there feels like little balance.
Toddler must have been tired because the let-me-get-my-own-way tantrums started when I picked her up at pre-school and they didn’t stop. Get me this now, do this now, be here now, I want this now were the variety of demands that were coming from Toddler’s mouth with varying degrees of anger and whines.
The final straw was when I gave her supper. Rice and lightly sauted veggie in garlic and lemon. Delish. Toddler didn’t want it. She wanted pancakes. I had no eggs, can’t make them. She looked me square in the face and screamed at me in anger.
Without batting an eyelash she was in the room, in jammies, washed up and in bed.
No one yells at Mommy. Sorry. It’s not happening.
That’s when the breakdown started. And Toddler got herself in hysterics so I had no choice but to go in and talk to her. Staring at her 3-year old face I called her from the drama she’d created and when her tired eyes asked me to cuddle I said yes.
Lying beside her, watching the peace over take her face as I stroked her back, I smiled thinking about how lucky I am to have her. How lucky I am to be blessed with her beautiful soul and to be able to see first hand what it’s like to raise a baby into an independent, free thinking little being. And as I lay there kissing her forehead, rubbing her hair and smelling her skin I thought, “Soon my baby won’t want these bedtime cuddles anymore.”
So I squeezed her tighter and stayed an extra few minutes.
It’s best to take advantage of these moments right now, immediately when the opportunity presents itself. Important to stay fully in that moment because when they’re gone they’re gone. Dishes, laundry, work… those things will always be there. Moments with your baby, your toddler, your kid… they won’t be because they are fleeting… and as the minutes pass so do these moments.
If you don’t allow yourself to linger there, how will you ever give your brain enough time to paint that memory in your mind? Then they will be lost forever and that would be the worst thing ever.
So stay in the moment, stay present, enjoy your child when you can… it’s what makes being a parent worth it all.