October 10, 2012

A First Nightmare

James had his first official nightmare last night. It was a sweet moment, but it was (obviously) very scary for him. This is the first time he had come downstairs and said, "Mommy I've had a bad dream."  And he was trembling, and it was tough.

He asked if he could sleep in my bed --so we snuggled for a bit--but then, I went upstairs with him.

I crawled under the covers of the little blue bed, with my sweet little almost five-year old boy and we snuggled.

There was an article in the Huffington Post just recently about how you never know when one of these moments will be your last moment with your child. I think there will be plenty more snuggles with him, but can I guarantee that? Nothing in this world is a guarantee, that's for sure.

Here's a snippet from the article: "It hit me in the darkness of his cluttered room that these days are numbered. Some night in the future, Little Dude will ask me to snuggle with him before he falls asleep, and I will have no idea that it will be the last time. I won't know to pay attention or to try to commit every minute to memory. Days or weeks or months later, I will try to recall when that last snuggle happened. I won't be able to. I know I will ache to slide next to him on his narrow bed, listen to him breathe and wait for the moment when he surrenders to his dreams. All of the irritations, the inconveniences and the wishing for time alone will seem insignificant in comparison to the warmth and peace of his nighttime routine. I will regret the times I hurried through bedtime and left his room even though he asked me to stay "Just one more minute, Mommy"
...It will be too late."

The memory of that article was not lost on me last night.

I cuddled him until he drifted off to sleep and as I started to get up and sneak out... tucking him in tightly, so the "monsters" wouldn't get him... I felt him move.

And with a quiet small voice, like that of a little lamb, he whispered, "Mommy. Are you still here?"

I felt my eyes well up with tears.

As I told James, yes baby mommy is still here, I wanted to keep him so close and I wanted to call in sick to work and I wanted to go nowhere for the next hundred years.

At 3 o'clock in the morning, sometimes that's the only place where I am slapped upside the head with gratefulness. I have so much to be thankful for. I work on my gratefulness and thankfulness on a daily basis...but sometimes God's grace and my awe of it all is show most clearly by a 45 pound meatloaf... named James.

I think parenting is weird and weird and it gets weirder by the second. I never ever had any idea what to expect from it. I won't lie... it is hard. Harder when you don't have family close by...and harder when you're working two full-time jobs (yes, it's apparently that way now).

But I just think... at 3 o'clock in the morning when some of my other friends are well-rested, fun and single... having the "times of their lives" ...and sleeping... sometimes I am so jealous. But then I am humbled by a little voice, the little voice of my first born son. 

Humbled. In awe.

These early morning moments are the times that make all the sleepless nights, all the fears, the worries, and the sacrifices...just worth it. Those moments. Not crossing a finish line, not getting a promotion, not having money sacked away in the bank account. 

The snuggles with my son when he whispers, mommy are you still here, and I can promise him that I am... and I mean it, with my heart and soul... that's the real money.

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