Thursday, October 23, 2008

Bedtime Memories

I have such fond memories of bedtime with Elijah - that is, until he started to buck the system about a year ago. But when reminiscing about those days between infancy and 3-year-old tyranny, I always smile wistfully.

Although Elijah always went to bed easily, I had the luxury of time that you only enjoy with one child and only after it is gone, so we rocked and read and sang almost every night. We read the obligatory Good Night Moon until it was memorized and I sang the standard lullabies until he was old enough to put in his own requests. And we cuddled. Our son was a world-class cuddler (still is, to be honest). He would wrap his arms around my neck and nestle his head on my shoulder and I would sigh and wish it could last forever.

But it couldn't, because then we had Allison . . .

. . . and life got more complicated. Dan and I soon split bedtime duties, and since I was nursing, I always got Alli. One might argue that is when and why Elijah's bedtime woes began, but that is for another post. Life changes and you have to adapt.

Now Allison was also a good sleeper, and still is. In fact, she didn't need to be cuddled or rocked, only needed a full tummy and her crib. So I would nurse her and lay her down with a quick kiss and leave the room. And that is the routine we stayed with for over 2 years. Well, now she is old enough to enjoy a good story (Good Night Moon is back!) and requests one nightly. So while Dan and I still split bed-time duties, it is usually more evenly between the kids than those first months.

That's why I almost cried last night when it was my turn to put Alli to bed and we read Mommy's Best Kisses, a book all about how mommy animals kiss their babies while putting them to bed. Alli insisted that I kiss her in the same way each page described, and after I was done reading she said, "My turn. Read mommy" and proceeded to turn each page and kiss me likewise. Oh, how I melted and enjoyed that precious time with her. I may not have memories of night after night rehearsing the same traditions, but I will cherish every night like that one I get.


Lisa said...

Those are sweet memories. Since our boys share a room, I get to tuck them both in and kiss them good-night. Though the boys won't kiss me anymore, they still want hugs every day and night.

Linda C said...

Sweet, sweet sweet:) Those are the moments that you tuck in your heart and they last a lifetime. Thanks for sharing, Donette.

~Linda C

Miscellaneous From Missy said...

Aww. I'm so glad you got a moment like that. I was just thinking the other day how I read a lot more to Liberty than I do to Mercy. Mainly because I didn't have a two year old running around pulling things down on top of her when Liberty was small. But a few days ago, I got to read to both of them at once. Mercy even seemed to enjoy looking at the pictures. Poor Liberty missed her spot on Mommy's lap, but she coped with a side-snuggle, and I loved every second of it!

Elizabeth said...

that is really sweet!

girlie girl said...

That's so sweet! I cherish and try to hold on to those moments too - they go so fast!