But, every now and then an article by writers, chock full of their opinions, will find it's way onto my FB newsfeed, or in a magazine I happen to pick up, sometimes about the importance of sleep training for the child's sake (which I have no strong feelings about, since like I said, our motivation is purely about us), and sometimes about the importance or beauty of sleeping with your children while they are little, because after all, 'they won't want you in their bed when they're teenagers'. While I do read the articles, usually I am unmoved, make some mental comment like, 'power to ya mom', and move on to the next article. But a few weeks ago a couple friends shared a blog by a woman who still lays with her son at bedtime. (I wish I could remember who it was....good blog post.) My friends echoed this woman's thoughts, emotions, actions about laying with their own sons so I read the blog. Something about the way she said (loosely quoting) 'if my son needs these few minutes with me to help him calm or quiet then why not', to which I thought...you know, I give everything all day long to them, why not just a few more minutes. She also mentioned how, in these quiet moments, her son will pontificate on things not mentioned in the light of day....maybe a time for those deep thoughts to surface and what a tragedy to miss that!
So, I modified the idea to stay true to the commitment Scott and I made for our evenings together, but also to lay down with each of my boys for just a few minutes each. We call it 'nuggles' and we have all fallen in love with it. It might be one of the most special times of my day with them. All three boys snuggle very differently....Timothy presses his entire body as close to mine as he can and does not move or speak. If I ask him a question, his answers are short and concise. Mason, nuzzles and coo's, squitching around with a grin on his face saying, "I love you mommy" over and over. Elijah is somewhere in the middle, rubbing his legs up and down mine, and kissing me over and over while watching the moon hanging on their wall as it goes through it's light cycles. In these moments I smell them, kiss them...on the head, eyes, cheeks, nose...I tell them briefly about the next day, wish them sweet dreams and tell them over and over how much I love them. My days (like most moms) are loud, busy, fast, and often overwhelming with routine, behaviors, consequences, laundry, meals...the daily responsibilities of raising little people while maintaining sanity and a healthy marriage, and sometimes I fall WAY short on my displays of affection, especially when the 'behaviors' part gets the best of me, frustrating me to my core. This is especially true with Timothy, my 6 year old. He is often my greatest challenge, but in that nuggle, he is still my baby boy and I think, without realizing it, we both needed this time together. These few moments with my sons takes the day away. It wipes our slate clean so when we meet again early the next morning, the last moments we had were nuggles and not nagging.
I'm glad I read that blog and I'm glad I don't have an ideal I try to stand on when it comes to these kind of parenting choices, because I would be sad now, to go back and not have this time. These days are precious, as we all know, and one day, they won't want to nuggle with their mommy anymore, as they have since they were babies.