Thursday, July 29, 2010

Babies Don't Keep

The cross stitch on the left was made by my Mom and given to me when my first child, Abigail, was born. When Molly came around, Mom made her a beautiful blanket with the alphabet cross stitched around the edges, but I still transferred this particular print to her nursery as well. Then came my 3rd, my baby boy, Zach. I also hung this print in his room.

It reads:
Babies Don't Keep
Cleaning and scrubbing
can wait 'til tomorrow.
For babies grow up,
we've learned to our
So quiet down cobwebs,
Dust go to sleep.
I'm rocking my baby
babies don't keep.

It seems benign enough. We all read it and think, "oh that is so true" and then we go back to sweeping, washing dishes, mopping, folding clothes and shooing our kids to "go play" while we clean. At least I know I am incredibly guilty of doing just that. I suppose my Mom knew this when she took her time and made me that particular cross stitch.

I always feel things have to be "just so" before I will sit down and relax. I think if I can just put a load in the wash, fold that other load "really quickly" then I will sit down and rock my babies. Oh, but wait, let me just dust that end table it won't take long, and take the trash out THEN I can sit...oh but, I can throw a load of dishes in the dishwasher while I am doing that...and then...

Well, you get the picture. Before you know it, they are growing up and no longer wish to be rocked. You have no idea how many times I have recited the above poem as I was vacuuming, dusting or folding laundry. Last night, however, an amazing thing happened.

Last night, I fed and bathed the kids then I cuddled with them in the girl's room as we watched "Annie" (Zach's current most favorite movie) for a little while. We all sang, "Tomorrow" and laughed at how we would never make it as a singing group. I held on to Molly, Zach and Abby and just enjoyed my babies. Then I scooped Zach up and rocked him in the silence of his room. I sang, "You are My Sunshine" (by request, another fave), "Mockingbird", "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star", "Rock a Bye Baby" and "Jesus Loves Me" as he dozed in my arms. I put him gently in his crib and went to check on Molly.  I found she had crawled in her bed and fallen asleep without any directions from me.  

It made me think, perhaps these crazy evenings I have with my 3 are really just cries for cuddles. I had a wonderful evening with my babies and was more relaxed and content than I had been in some time. My heart was full. Apparently so was theirs. So I suppose perhaps Mom was right along, those babies just don't keep, but that dust? Yeah, it will still be there tomorrow.


Darkwulfe said...

I wish every mom thought like you did...I wish every woman that had babies lived as you do...some just don't get it. I love you and miss you guys sooo very much...see you soon.

Sherry at EX Marks the Spot said...

My mom used that poem in her work and in her speeches about working moms and motherhodd generally. We had a copy in our house many years ago when I was growing up, and I had it in my house when my children were growing up.

What a terrific message!

Iris Silk said...

Savor those moments, Dear. That's why I cross-stitched that for you. All Mom's learn soon enough that "babies don't keep". Fortunately, they often grow up and give us grandbabies.

Evil Twin's Wife said...

So true. I love snuggling them as babies, but I also enjoy other milestones as well. It would be nice to have the best of both worlds, but that's not possible!

Will Shealy said...

Mandy, this is a wonderful post, and very sweet. Well-said!