One morning, I picked my son up from his crib, like I do most mornings. We sleepily went from his room to mine, like most mornings. We woke up slowly while snuggling, like most mornings. It could have been a mundane moment where I try to get five more minutes of shut-eye and he tries to wake me up kicking my shin and demanding his breakfast. But it wasn’t. Instead, it became a beautiful moment as I opened my eyes and he stared back at me.
He did not demand his breakfast or kick me. We simply paused and stared at each other for a few seconds, and our identical eyes took each other in. He reached over and sing-songed “I’m pinching your cheek, mommy,” and as he giggled, I stole another moment to stare at his pudgy little face before the chaos of the day began. Whether it would be a good day or a bad day, I had that moment.
The Good Days
When we have good days, and I define good days as only having to put my son in time out once or twice, we have really good days. It is usually when we have nowhere to go and the whole day is just for my husband, my son and me to do nothing together. We laugh, we play, and I’ll peek into my son’s room while he is napping and see my husband asleep on the floor next to the crib. He usually ends up falling asleep while pretending to sleep. I take a happy deep breath and feel grateful for them both being in my life before I sneak away while hoping they stay asleep for at least two hours.
The Bad Days
When we have bad days, and I define bad days as extended, multiple timeouts, we have really bad days. Sometimes it is when my husband is not at home, so my calm, cool, and collected counterpart is not there. Sometimes it is when we are on-the-go for most of the day. On days like this, my son will test his boundaries to the absolute limit, and the limit doesn’t take long to get to when he has been testing me all day. By the afternoon, I am about to absolutely lose it, so I have to walk away and take deep breaths. Then the limit is reached, I yell, he cries, I cry, we hug, I apologize in shame, and then he’s back to his ornery self, smiling while doing something he knows he’s not supposed to, like licking the mirror or spilling his goldfish all over the floor.
Never Down For Long
You may be reading this and thinking (in a sarcastic voice), oh poor you, it could be so much worse. And you would be absolutely right. Even when we have really bad days, I still feel fortunate. We are never down for long because we are all very quick to forgive the temper tantrums, whether they should come from my son or me.
The good days help me to pause, close my eyes, take a deep breath, and forget about the bad days. Especially when I get to have mornings when my son with his beautiful, big brown eyes and his sleepy grin, takes his forehead and puts it against mine.