Bedtime around here is usually a really rushed time. It’s been almost a year since any of my boys had a daily nap. With summer here and my boys with me all day, their quick go-to-bed routine is probably more for my benefit than theirs: so I can have quiet to work or read or watch tv or have a glass of wine.
They always fall asleep quickly, so they must be ready for bedtime, too.
But, one night last week, I put aside all that I needed or wanted to do that didn’t involve my kids. My youngest cuddled on my lap while my two oldest actually shared the couch peacefully.
I ran my fingers through my baby’s hair, knowing that he’s now old enough that he’ll be headed to preschool in just a few weeks.
I looked over at my big boys: one headed to first grade and one to kindergarten. All day long they will be gone.
And while the snarky side of me wants to rejoice in all the peace and quiet I will have, the reality is that I will miss them.
So, I let the clock slide way past their normal bedtimes.
And when my youngest’s eyes were starting to close, I took him to his room, got him settled in, and laid beside him until he drifted off. No quick tuck in, kiss goodnight, and bolt out the door that night. Instead, I watched his eyelashes flutter against his cheeks that are losing their baby roundness and realized how quickly time passes.
Back downstairs, my big boys were insisting they were watching the movie on the screen, when I could see that they weren’t going to last much longer.
But, for once, I didn’t push it and insist they head to bed. Because what was the harm? What was my rush?
It was a sweet, quiet moment.
Soon, I could hear by their slow, even breaths that they were fast asleep.
And I realized that sometimes, this mama needs to chill out and stop trying to rush everything.