“It’s 11:57 p.m. My head hits the pillow and your cries hit the monitor.
It’s a different night, but the same old song and dance.
Your long legs dangle off the far end of my midsection as your lips nuzzle in for a midnight feeding, and it occurs to me just how conflicted this Mama heart of mine is.
I both long for the nights when the whole of your body fit cradled in just one of my arms, and look forward to the nights when you will sleep all the way through, giving me permission to take my own sleep in one big, dreamy lump sum.
I long for the days when you still fit into that favorite onesie; the turquoise one with the blue whales that filled my heart with pitter patters by the way it made your blue eyes shine. Yet, I look forward to the day when you fit into those shoes that I bought two sizes too big, just because they were on sale and I could imagine you running across the yard in them one day.
I long for the days of pureed sweet potatoes smeared across your sweet face, but look forward to hot dogs that don’t have to be sliced down the middle and family movie nights accompanied by large tubs of popcorn.
I long for the infant car seat you rode home from the hospital in, all the while looking forward to the day that we can forgo car seats all together, and you can buckle the seatbelt across your own lap.
I long for the cling of your newborn fingers, yet I look forward to the days when you don’t need me quite so much for every little thing.
This motherhood thing; it’s a complicated web of longing for the past, living in the present, and praying for the future. And if I’m being honest, sometimes I can’t seem to balance the three.
In my reminiscing for what was, and anticipation of what will be, I forget to recognize the now; overshooting it by the five minutes that it’ll take to finish ‘this’ task, or the two weeks that it’ll take for you to get through ‘that’ difficult phase.
I don’t want to lose this moment.
I don’t want to be so busy longing for or looking for that I don’t take the time to memorize the faint whispers of your breath or the way your fine hair reflects ever so slightly in the glow of your favorite night light.
I don’t want to miss out on the curve of your fingers around my thumb, or the way that your feet kick absentmindedly as you nurse in the middle of the night.
I didn’t want to get back out of bed tonight; didn’t want to answer your midnight wake up call. But I did, and this moment we’re in– there’s something magical about it.
So yes, my heart is probably always going to long, and my mind is always going to look forward, but I’m also going to give it my all to not overlook these moments we’re living.
And tonight, I think I’ll stay here with you for just a while longer.”
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