Posted by: Eric and Heidi | February 20, 2015

Those First Five Minutes

My girls had gymnastics this morning at 11am.  Before that, Lia cried…

-because she wanted breakfast.

-because she didn’t want to go downstairs for breakfast.

-because she wanted carried down the stairs.

-because she didn’t want to be carried after all.

-because she wanted her cereal.

-because she didn’t realize the cereal was already in front of her.

-because she wanted a different spoon.

-because, after two bites, she wanted “more!”

-because, after getting more and having another two bites, she was “full!”

-because Abbi was in the bath and she wanted a bath, too.

-because I put her in the bath and she didn’t want one.

-because I gave her a bath anyway.

-because, after washing her, I attempted to take her out of the dreaded bath when she clearly wanted to play.

-because she wanted her towel.

-because, when I got her towel, she wanted her towel in the bath.

because I took her out of the bath.

-because she wanted her hair done while I was lotioning her.

-because she wanted the lotion when I was doing her hair.

-because she wanted to get dressed all by herself.

-because she got her arms and legs stuck while dressing herself.

-because she wanted me to get her unstuck.

-because I tried to get her unstuck.

And then it was time to go to gymnastics.  IMG_6418I quickly brushed my teeth and threw my unwashed hair in a braid.  I threw a sweatshirt on to hide the fact that I wasn’t wearing a bra (I’m sorry, but it’s true!) and I ran out the door.  No shower.  No make-up.  No outfit.  No clean underwear, for crying out loud!  (I mean, why add to my laundry pile by putting clean drawers on a dirty behind?!)  However, let the record show that we rolled in to gymnastics at 10:58 with two clean, fed, bathed, outfitted, hair-done kids…on time.  Success!!

Now, it’s true, I could have gotten ready this morning.  I could have gotten out of bed as soon as my eyes opened and gotten my shower before they woke up.  I could have.  But if I did, I would have missed those first five minutes with them.  And those first five minutes are what gets me through the rest of the day.  Those first five minutes with Abbi, where she climbs into bed with me and curls into the contours of my body.  Those first five minutes when I feel her toes flexing into my thigh like a cat kneading her paws, testing that I’m there and that all is right with her world.  Those first five minutes with Lia when we sink into the rocking chair, a tangle of baby and mommy and bears and blankets.  Those first five minutes when she digs her head into my chest and I rest my face on her curls, breathing in scent of coconut and sleepy baby breath.  In those first five minutes, no one is crying.  No one is fighting.  No one is hitting or chasing or asking for anything at all.  In those first five minutes I simply hold my babies and drink them in.  Sometimes the spell holds for six minutes or even seven.  On rare days we make it to ten minutes and I begin contemplating adding another baby to our nest.  Inevitably, though, the spell is broken and my work for the day begins.  There are tears and tantrums and fights to break up.  There is a constant cycle of feeding them and cleaning up from feeding them just to feed them again.  And yes, today I didn’t shower and I arrived at gymnastics looking like a total wreck with a two-year old who is in rare form.  But I’m ok with it.  It’s worth it.  I got those first five minutes today and I get five more tomorrow.  And that’s enough.

And, just to put your mind at ease, I did get around to showering at naptime.  There are limits, after all.



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