Is anything more delicious than the heavy weight of a sleeping child in your arms, one hand carelessly cradling your neck as they sigh sleepily? As Tess gets older and Remy gets bigger, I realize that my new addiction is this moment of trust and innocence. If I could inhale my kids or freeze this moment in time to revisit on more challenging days, I would.
Work has kept my wildly occupied, so we made a vow to ‘do family’ this weekend, to make up for the fact that Dave took the kids to a romantic picnic on Monday that I didn’t show up to until an hour after. That means an early morning group trip to the cafe and grocery store, a lazy afternoon barbecue with friends, a friend’s book release and a late dinner just the four of us (and the passersby – more involved than one would think!). By the end of all of this wonderfulness, we all wanted to crawl into bed. And here I found myself with Tess draped over my shoulder, so confident in my abilities that she barely registered me pulling her sweater off and tucking her in. This child’s sweet smiles and chirps win over every crowd, but we are her parents. When people call their kids their “pride and joy”, I’ve mentally rolled my eyes. Still, Tess brings my heart to bursting daily. Her tottering steps, inquisitive looks and squawks of pure fury strike me like a bell. I stand awestruck that this tiny tyrant calls me mom, and have to grin and laugh at my greed and joy.
Dave makes me feel the same way. As he emptied the dishwasher and made bottles for the 11pm feeding, he shooed me off to bed myself. What in the world makes a person feel more loved than being given that late-night reprieve?!
This summer’s been swallowed up by responsibility, and I’ve been loudly lamenting the idyllic plans I had for us back in the spring. Well, yesterday we got our a long afternoon with friends, food and sunshine at our house. The kids caught bugs, played with all sorts of things we don’t call toys, ran back and forth from the park and ate to their hearts’ content. This was our first yard party with a walker, and that definitely adds to the chaos! But seeing Tess toddle after the big kids was almost as adorable as seeing the big kids moon over Remy.
After some solid naps, we headed out, double stroller on the double, to a friend’s book launch followed by a quiet dinner under the stars. Our kids slept the whole way home, so we could enjoy a few minutes reflection. I just had this feeling of,
This is the life I want to give them.
As silly as that sounds, as ridiculous as choosing a moment to represent a lifetime may be, that’s the truth.