Sunday, October 19, 2008


Hi Sweet Baby,

Something happened last night. I’m not sure if it’s the emotion of your Daddy being out of town or the exhaustion of a long day of work, for some reason I just have to write it down for fear of forgetting it. That it will be forever lost in the mélange of impending tasks, dinner menus and retreat preparations that’s swirling around my overloaded little brain. If I don’t document it now, I’m afraid I never will.

Last night you awoke, uncharacteristically at 3:00am. I sprung out of bed with all the energy I could muster at such an inhumane hour and hurried to your room. You see, there is a critical moment that occurs between the second you begin to fuss and the point where you are fully awake. If Daddy or I are able to slip in the binky during said moment, we will all sleep soundly until morning.

Last night, Mommy missed her window of opportunity. Your dark eyes pierced through the darkness, unblinking as you wailed. Against the advice of every baby book we own, I scooped you up. As soon as your head hit my chest, your little body sank with a sigh and the cries ceased. And then we began to sway.

Back and forth we swayed.

A sliver of streetlight was our spotlight. The ticking clock our rhythm. As its hand traveled through the passing minutes, I breathed deeply your indescribable baby scent. Your feather-like hair tickled my nose. Your delicate hand, stroked my arm. It was just us girls tonight.

Back and forth.

I heard your breath even out, knowing you were dreaming. In a week, you will be six months old. I lingered putting you down as the realization hit me. While we stood there rocking back and forth in your room, in the dark, memories clicked through my mind like slides through a projector.

Back and forth.

I started swaying the day we found out you existed. After telling your Daddy, he wrapped his arms around me and we rocked back and forth. Too excited to hold still.

Back and forth.

I’d sway in the Kroger aisle. Hoping to relieve the joint pain I suffered from a swollen belly.

Back and forth.

Just weeks old, in the wee hours of the morning, moving was the only thing that could console you. Sometimes you’d resign yourself to the motion of your swing. But you always preferred your mother’s arms.

Imperfect arms. Unsure arms. Arms of a woman attempting to chart the waters of motherhood. A woman who wouldn’t deserve you if she had succeeded every day of her life. I’ve made so many mistakes, Baby. We’ve had some long, almost unbearable nights. You’ve been so forgiving. As steady as our silent dance, you awake each morning with your radiant smile shining up at the woman you know as Mommy. Ready for a new day. A do-over.

You’re a daily reminder of the Lord’s mercies that are new everyday. And while the night might be long, His joy comes in the morning.

Back and forth we sway.

Soon I will put you down. But for now, while we can, I want to sway just like this. Back and forth we go Baby Doll.

For you are my daughter, I am your mother.

And tonight, it’s just us.

1 comment:

  1. Oh. My. Word.

    I'm getting ready to bawl into my Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate.

    This was breathtaking, Rachel. What a beautiful and sweet reminder to cherish each moment -- even those moments in the middle of the night when we are holding and treasuring our precious gifts.

    I'm so glad you stopped by my blog, 'cause now I've found you.