Sometimes, there are beautiful, unplanned moments of bonding with your little ones. Moments like these can’t be fabricated or sought out. You just get to be blissfully surprised when they happen.
The other night, the kids got their dinner and bath early, and so there was quite a bit of play time before it was time to go to bed. In J’s new room downstairs, we have a queen size bed waiting for him to move into it. (Okay fine, there’s nowhere else to put it for the next few months before he’s ready for it.) Anyway, EK, J and I were piled on the bed. They had some toys they were playing with, and I was half playing on my phone, and half falling asleep. These days (33 weeks, for crying out loud!), it’s difficult to not want to nod off at every opportunity. After a little while, EK ran off to go find Daddy and I was left with J nestled in that space between my belly and knees, happily playing with his toys.
After my eyes had been closed for a minute or two, J crawled up next to my face, and started jabbering away about something. He does this fairly often, delivering a monologue that only he can fully understand, but that we all stop and listen to. I opened my eyes and looked at him, and he just stared into my eyes and talked to me. How I wish I knew what he was saying! Telling me secrets of dreams and desires, or just telling me he’d rather I fix his dinner some other way, I don’t know, but I loved just listening to his scruffy voice, lilting as though with perfect English.
I rolled over onto my back, and he crawled on my belly, still jabbering on. When he paused, I leaned forward a little bit, giving him what (I didn’t realize then) must’ve been his first Eskimo kiss – you know, where you rub your noses together? His giggles filled the room, vigorously shaking his head back and forth against mine, trying unsuccessfully to recreate the nose rubs. Every time I drew our faces together and “Eskimo kissed” him, he dissolved into giggles, rolling back and forth across my swollen belly.
Now, bringing the attention to my belly, the very tangible reminder of the time soon to come, I thought about how in a few weeks, my attention will be split even further, as I nurture and nourish our third child. These uninterrupted moments with my oldest two will be harder to come by than they already are. But for right now, I’m going to rest in the moments that are just us. Even if I’m tired (falling asleep, even) or uncomfortable or just want to be by myself. I’m going to come when they call me, and say yes more often. I’m going to treat myself and them to more special moments of “just us”.