Vitamin Mama

three in wildflower garden

Some days I am amazed by the huge, intense, real, deep NEED my girls have for me.

I can love them up so hard, snuggle them so tightly they feel like part of my body again, and they come back the next day, ready for more.

Sometimes I check to make sure it’s not just me, overestimating my importance to them, but no. It’s real. My girls need me like they need food, water, and sleep.

The depth continues to surprise me. And, at times, overwhelm me.

coffee

Some days I just don’t have it for them. I don’t want to arbitrate fights for the Kitty plate or cajole them into their PJs or tell any “Laura & Nellie” stories.

But it’s impossible to resist them for long. Their need for me comes from such an innocent, real place that I find ways to rise to the occasion, again and again.

To read the giant stacks of books. To wrestle on the floor. To relax into bedtime rituals instead of hurrying through them.

To make peace with the fact that I don’t see my friends, #lean in, or run as often as I’d like.

HB snowsuit

Some day this need will lessen, or at least transform into something less physically intensive. But for now they are not growing out of it — not yet. My three year old (OK, nearly four) needs me as much as my just-turned-two year old. Probably more. (And yes, Bee is still in our bed most nights. Heaven help us when Blythe outgrows her crib).

I have learned one thing a lot of things in my nearly four years as a parent. Such as, you can’t continually fill up your kids’ buckets if yours is empty. Like they say: “If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.”

girls at Chestnut Park

Fortunately, filling up my girls is something I need, too. Along with sleep (now plentiful), coffee, the occasional date night, and time with friends.Snuggle with girls after MW

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Comments

  1. I absolutely love this. I feel this so often when people say that you have to take care of yourself too, which I know is super important, but I always think that taking care of them is part of taking care of myself. This describes it just right, thank you!

  2. You are so lucky to have love from those little bodies and hearts. Most days, it’s a struggle to get a hug here. When I have “one of those days” – there are few snuggles to recharge my parenting battery. Fortunately and unfortunately, I have an old soul born again with few needs. It’s lonely and challenging, fascinating and maddening. While I love everything about her and truly do accept her for that unique personality that often overwhelms (even her), I long for moments of innocent need and memories of warmth and closeness.

    • I never thought about what life would be like without all those snuggles… thank you for sharing your experience and reminding us that it’s not always that way. My oldest wasn’t a snuggler for the longest time and your comment just brought me back to what that was like and how it felt. If you ever want to write a post about what it’s like parenting a old soul, I’d love to share it!

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