Friday, January 11, 2013

{Soaking It In}

{Under the weather today, posting this from last seems a million years ago.  See you Monday!}

Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth 
Empty the dustpan, poison the moth, 

Hang out the washing and butter the bread, 
Sew on a button and make up a bed. 
Where is the mother whose house is so shocking? 
She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking. 

Oh, I've grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue 

(lullaby, rock-a-bye, Lullaby loo). 
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due 
(pat-a-cake, darling, and peek-peek-a-boo). 
The shopping is not done and there's nothing for stew 
And out in the yard there is a hullabaloo. 
But I'm playing "Kanga" and this is my "Roo." 
Look! Aren't his eyes the most wonderful hue? 
(lullaby, rock-a-bye, lullaby loo). 

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow, 

For children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow. 
So quiet down cobwebs. Dust go to sleep. 
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep. 

Ruth Hulburt Hamilton

My Mother tells a story of her brother paying a visit.  Her home was the usual chaos of 7 homeschooled children and as she led him through the house, she apologized.  "I guess you can see my priorities are pretty messed up."  He shook his head. "On the contrary," he replied, "your priorities seem perfectly in order."

My priorities are, as my Uncle once said, perfectly in order.  Don't mind me if my house is a bit of a mess, or if I spend an inordinate amount of time shirking my other responsibilities in favor of playing endless rounds of peek a boo with my boy.  He's growing, every second.  I wouldn't miss it for anything in the whole world. 

I keep telling my husband we can stop having babies once we get one that stays a baby.  He doesn't think I'm very funny.

Peter is weeks away from a year old and these days I can practically hear the clock ticking when I look into that precious little face of his.  This boy is all joy.  The honor of being his mother is pure sweetness, yet lately I have been feeling that undercurrent of the bitter with the sweet.

This is the hard part of being a mother: the letting go.  It starts with those first few labor pangs, when your body lets go for the first time and that communal life is severed.  From then on, each day is a step toward their eventual independence.  It's a wonderful grace that the hardest parts are mixed in with the best parts of being a Mama - the pride at each accomplishment.  The thrill of watching a child grow into an incredible asset to all of humanity.  God knew what He was doing when He gave women the gift of motherhood.  It stretches us, challenges us, changes us, grows us, softens us.  Even when it hurts us, it keeps us open to more sacrificial love than we ever knew ourselves to be capable of.

These days, I'm soaking it all in.  His soft head of dark curls.  Those chocolate chip eyes.  I'm cheering when he runs through his newly learned tricks - sticking out his tongue on cue, shouting "Mamamamamamaaaa!" and taking a few wobbly steps.  I'm stroking that silk soft skin stretched tight over some of the chubbiest little thighs I've ever seen.  I'm relishing the near constant nursing that is one of my very favorite parts of mothering these little ones.  And I'm thankful for the past 11 months, each day waking up with this precious person wrapped right up in my arms.  While I wish the tides of time would just wait a little bit more,  I'm grateful for every fast fleeting second that I have with this darling boy.


  1. Beautiful, Lydia! I loved your comment about "we can stop having babies when we get one that stays a baby..." I agree. Why does the baby period have to be so short?

    1. It seemed so long with the first one...but with each subsequent baby, it gets shorter!

  2. My mom had an embroidered wall hanging with the last few lines of that poem (starting with "cleaning and scrubbing" in her dining room all the time we were growing up. Your uncle got it right. Thanks for a beautiful post.

    1. I've love an embroidered motto of that! Hmm, perhaps a future project? Thanks for stopping by!

  3. The days are long but the years are short!
    Nursing my babes is one of the most precious things I cherish!!

  4. Love this post as with all of your writing, it is very encouraging to cherish those little ones and keep the priorities straight! I have a question...
    When do you start wearing the baby on your back in the ergo? I have a HUGE 3 month old. He is 17 lbs! I read that because of hip and spine development, it is not recommended to wear them on the back till they are 5-6 months of age. Yikes! I can barely wear him on the front and keep on getting things done and not end up with a very sore back. How do you do it? Just wondering. I know you are a baby wearing advocate and so am I but wearing my big boy on the front in a carrier is killing me.

    1. I know how this goes - my last baby was the same! Have you tried a Beco? I find that those are a bit easier to use with younger babies as the don't seem to have to spread their legs quite as wide and can keep them tucked up a bit more (having a hard time explaining this but hopefully you know what I mean!). With their legs tucked in and a bit more head support, those are better for back carriers than the ergo with younger babies. Or you could always get a wrap and try some of those crazy awesome carries that Mamas all over the world use!

  5. Thanks! I will check out the Beco.


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