Like so many mothers, I look forward to the end of the day. That precious time, after the kids are asleep, when there is peace. Peace, that blissful state, encompassing me like a fuzzy warm blanket. No agenda other than the decision to veg out and watch TV, or indulge in a hot bubble bath, or maybe do some yoga, or crawl into bed early with my book.
My favorite time though, is those few minutes where I check on my sleeping children, and tuck them in one more time for the night. In those still moments, I feel the prayer of motherhood issue forth from my heart in a torrent of love. To keep them safe from harm, to raise them well, to help them venture into the world as sentient, compassionate, courageous, free-thinking people. It is the one thing that truly humbles me, when I take those moments to see all that my children are. To encompass and grasp the vastness of life and all the terrifying wonders that it brings us.
The soft breath of exhalation, the contentment of their slumber. Tousled hair, legs and arms awry, lips parted, hands curled like lotus flowers. Eyelashes that lay against soft cheeks, tummies rising up and down. Quietly and peacefully, I watch my children sleep.
I take that time, I allow myself to be swept away in love. I take that time to treasure the here and now. All those minor irritants of daily life, perhaps the trouble they were in, the fights they had, the anger and frustration I directed towards them, they all flake away. It sloughs off, leaving behind purity, and the raw brilliance of devotional love. This one moment in time, the only time I am truly guaranteed to have these people in my life. I give in to the emotion. I kiss them a few times, I cherish my gifts. I am brought to my knees in all the true splendour mothering was meant to be. I marvel at the softness of their cheeks, and how little they still truly are.
The next few years will bring so many changes to our family, with the kids growing up and away from me. Bodies will morph, voices will change, demands and attitudes will hit me like a tsunami. But not yet. Not right now, not while they can still be truly held to my heart as my children.