The other day I came home from work and laid on the floor next to Chloe. She was getting tired and fidgety, so I laid my hand on her chest. Somehow this always calms her, and she settled down and slowly dozed off. I watched her as she slept. Her chubby cheeks that I kiss a thousand times a day. Her perfect rosy lips. Her Michelin Man limbs. Her impossibly cute feet and toes. My eyes drank it all in and savored it. Then I laid my head down next to hers, closed my eyes and inhaled her sweet baby smell. The busyness of the day melted away. I felt a peace and contentment. And it dawned on me how holding her close and breathing her in always calms me.
When Chloe was born, our world was thrown into new baby chaos. Schedules and routines and psyches of jealous siblings were thrown for a loop. Then as soon as little Coco finally got used to the world and started settling down into some semblance of a routine, it was time for me to go back to work. Getting back into the swing of things after five months of maternity leave, then going home after a loooong day to, not one, but TWO little people vying for attention, has taken it’s toll on me. I am physically and mentally exhausted. I feel like there’s not enough time. I feel like there’s never any rest.
The other day I randomly came across O Magazine’s “What I Know For Sure” article about peace and relaxation. Oprah was supposed to write something about finding time to rest, but being as crazy busy as she was, she wasn’t sure she knew anything for sure about the topic. Then in looking over at her dog, Sadie, she realized she got moments of peace during their daily cuddles. In those simple, quiet moments she got a little rest.
These pauses throughout the day are so important. There’s a great story in The Power of Pause by Terry Hershey, about an American on safari in Africa. He traveled with a cumbersome load, which locals were recruited to help him carry. On the first, second and third day they made great progress in their journey. But on the fourth day, the tribesmen refused to move. When the American inquired about it, the translator responded,
They are waiting for their souls to catch up with their bodies.
Looove that. How often do we allow our souls to catch up with our bodies?
My first day back to work, Steve brought the girls by to visit. I held Chloe’s face in my hands and inhaled deeply, and that little moment of pause calmed me in the middle of a chaotic day. Holding my baby is where I find my ahhh moments.
The 5-year-old on the other hand? That’s a different story for a different day.