I did something I haven't done in a very long time this past weekend. I slept in the same bed as my daughter.
Well, I say slept. I didn't really get as much sleep as one would hope. But I did get the opportunity to snuggle my daughter while she was sleeping, and watch her face, and think a lot, which was a gift in its own way.
And watching, holding, my sleeping daughter made my heart so tender towards her. It's funny how that works. I lay there with my arms around her and thought of all the things I want her to know, all the hopes I have for her, all the experiences I am excited for her to have and all the things I hope she can manage to avoid. And how little control I have over any of that.
But just for Saturday night, when she slept in my arms, she was safe and beloved and I think she could feel it. I am going to hold on to that feeling in my heart for the many times she will try my patience this week, as she and I are on our own for most of it. I will hold onto that tenderness and remember her sleeping face, and I will try to give her the best of me.
Of course, now that I've written that, I will inevitably lose my cool and yell at her and then feel doubly bad about it because I wrote about how I wasn't going to do that. Well, that's motherhood for you. But maybe I'll try and give myself a little grace, too, since I know my mother held me in my arms, lo, these many years ago, and thought those tender thoughts about me, too.