the waiting game

7:24 PM

Here’s a little confession – Teddy still doesn’t sleep through the night. There I said it. I feel like it's such an embarrassing thing to admit, like I'm such a failure because honestly who's ten month old still doesn't sleep through the night??? What that translates into for us is the fact that we are still more or less zombies most days. We’ve tried everything under the sun and given his acid reflux I just don’t have the heart to do full blown CIO since when he cries a lot he starts to cough and borderline throw up. I just can’t do it. Everything else just hasn’t worked. At this point it’s easier to just accept this current state and not worry about what we should be doing. However, that doesn’t mean that every minute of every day I don’t pine for the day that he sleeps as soundly as Birdie does. It’s going to get easier, right? And so we wait...
We wait for them to grow out of being a newborn so we can sleep again. We wait for them to sit up so that they can entertain themselves more. We wait for them to start eating (mistakenly thinking that will make things easier though instead it always makes me yearn for the bottle days). We wait for them to walk, talk, grow out of diapers... So much waiting.
But then something one of my husband's co-workers said to him the other day stopped me in my tracks. He's a father of four and he said this "When I think about having young kids I feel like you're always waiting for things to get easier but what you fail to notice is that life is happening amidst all the waiting." How painfully true... Yes, newborns are difficult. Lack of sleep is difficult. Balancing a baby and toddler is difficult. Changing diapers on two kids is not easy. But this certainly isn't everything that makes up having young children. Perhaps it is our fried brains that seem to zero in on the negative and the difficult and take for granted the wonderful.
I started looking at everything differently since hearing this. When cradling Teddy at 2 am while feeding him I made sure to enjoy his sleepy grunts and the warmth of his sweet little hands. I noticed the weight of his body and the way the fluff of his hair feels up against my arm. Because there will be more babies in this house one day but Teddy will never be like this again - ten months old and a ball of unbridled affection and energy. And when I'm wrangling him for yet another diaper change I marvel at the way his body has grown and changed but also at those few lingering features from when he was a newborn. I have a new appreciation for his clingy days as his headstrong sister never has those anymore and I would give anything to carry her in my arms all day. And when he cries or Birdie whines I try to remember that one day I will give anything for them to need me this way again.
So yes, I am tired and sometimes spend all day counting the hours until bedtime but it feels so good to be reminded that one day all I will have from these days are pictures and my heart will ache for them again. This our season of life with littles and it's a great one though not an easy one. But let's be honest - it never really gets that easy? So I suppose I better focus on the good, overlook the bad and cherish the wonderful. And life is funny in that when you decide to look for the positive you start to realize that all along there has actually been an abundance of it, just waiting for you to take notice.

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