I'm sure I've said it before, but Mae's nap time is my most productive time to work. But today, like many days, my little almost-three-year-old decided that she didn't need to nap. We did our usual after lunch routine of sitting on the "big girl potty", reading a couple books, then turning on soft music and rocking in her glider for a few minutes, but I could see it in her bright blue eyes that she wasn't the least bit sleepy. I rocked her for an extra minute or two, all the while tabulating a monstrous to-do list in my head for when I left the room. Then, I set her in her crib and told her that I wanted her to close her eyes and rest, that it was important for her to let her body slow down, and that Mommy needed to work. She obliged in my request, but her closed eyes fluttered as she fought the urge to open them wide.
Thirty minutes later, not suprisingly, she was still awake. Typically, I leave her in her room for an hour or so, then call it a day and hope for an early bedtime so that I can possibly get some work done before I collapse into an exhausted heap. But tonight Daniel has accountability group with our Bible study guys, and so I will be flying solo. Besides, I have so much to accomplish that I need her to nap today. Even still, something in me decided to turn off the sewing machine, unplug the glue gun, and go check on my girl.
When I walked into her room she was jumping in her crib as if she were the next Gabby Douglas. I picked her up and carried her to the rocking chair. We sat down, covered up with her blankly, and she immediately relaxed. I began rocking her at a brisk pace, thinking about the emails that I needed to respond to, documents I needed to get for the CPA, wholesale orders to fill, teepees to make, dresses to design....the list goes on. She reached her sweaty little hand up to my face to play with my eyelashes, something she has done ever since she was a baby (I will be blind in my right eye, I just know it) and I looked down on her rosy little checks. And it hit me. God has given me today. Not tomorrow, today. I have a maximum of a couple hours a day to myself, and I get to choose how I spend it. Most days I spend it working at a feverish pace, and typically accomplishing a lot. But if everything were to fade away tonight and I were left reexamining my life, what would I wish I would have spent more time doing? Snuggling Mae, hands down. So, I started breathing deep and rocking her slowly. I hummed along with the musical renditions of U2 that were playing quietly on her CD player. I counted her eyelashes and marveled at her perfectly formed fingers. And she eventually fell asleep in my arms.
When I went to lay her in her crib, she turned and squeezed me tight.
Momma loves you too, baby girl.