Since becoming a Mother of twins, one of the most frequently asked questions that I get from others is whether my twins sleep through the night. Although their sleep patterns have continually improved since we brought them home from the hospital, 2 1/2 years later, they each still wake up at least one time per night. I don’t get to spend very much time with them during the workweek and I’m so used to the routine of interrupted sleep that the majority of the time when they wake up in the middle of the night, I really don’t mind it.
So the other night, at 1:30 am, I received my nightly wake up call from my son which started with a warm smile right as I entered his room. Then, he says softly to me: “Hi. I love you, Mama. Can I hold your hand?” So I lay down next to him and hold his hand and almost instantly he drifts back to sleep. Those moments, even at 1:30 in the morning, all add up to why I love being a Mom.
A few short hours later, before we were going to get into the car to begin our day, my daughter runs over to her toy guitar and turns on some music. As a familiar nursery-rhyme-type song begins to play, she excitedly scampers over to me and exclaims: “Dance with me Mama!” Was I already late? Yes. Did I dance? Of course I did. And as we were dancing, in between her blissfully sweet giggles she says: “I’m dancing with my friend, Mama!”
I literally felt my heart double in size upon hearing those words. They actually freed me from the daily grind that wears on all of us each and every day; the rotating hamster wheel where obligations continue to pile up, where you never get a moment’s rest, and where you’re always short on time. During my one-song morning dance with my friend, all of that went away.
As a parent, I’m always thinking about how much my children mean to me but what I don’t think about as often is just how much I mean to them. And as a parent of young children, moments like this make me realize that while I am teaching my kids to become good adults, they are simultaneously teaching me so many equally important things.
They are teaching me to:
- Appreciate the most special moments in my day – even if those moments occur in the middle of the night
- Not to take life too seriously. Take a moment to just laugh and have fun. Act like a toddler, who doesn’t have a care in the world.
- Dance. Sometimes you’ve just got to do it.