|(Photo: Matthew Spevack)|
You know how your children look so precious when they sleep? How sweet it is to "gaze lovingly" at your child, as Gretchen Rubin (author of The Happiness Project), puts it, when she's sleeping?
When I do that at night, I regain perspective. The countless times I've felt my body vibrating with irritation, as my friend describes it, melt away and I can be in the moment with her. While, ironically, she's asleep.
After I found myself on the verge of dumping a pot of dirt on my daughter's head last week, I've made an effort to claim a moment each day where I'm truly present with her; where I embrace the "everyday beauty," to quote my friend again. Whether it's kneading the pizza dough together, she gleefully boxing at it with her fists; making lunch into an outdoor picnic in the backyard; or taking a break with her at the porch in the afternoon sunshine to give her all my attention, perchance as we savor cocktail hour together.
Sometimes I feel like I'd be a much better mom if I did not have this constant urge to write. It's so much easier to, say, cook with Lilly, or clean, dance, read, sing, talk, play--I'll even say to garden--than it is to try to think and write with her around. If I can let go of work, I'm not as prone to snap; I'm more present, I have better perspective.