Each night, I spend my evenings following the same routine. It’s important to a toddler. We eat dinner and clean-up, then play with Kenzie. Around 7, we start the bedtime routine, which includes a bath, some reading and then bed. Before Kenzie goes to bed each night, we turn down the lights. I hold her and rock her. Most nights, she doesn’t fall asleep. Often we spend the time looking at each other. It’s our quiet time. It allows us to connect, to settle down and to spend some quality time together. I stare at her in awe of how quickly she’s growing and how much bigger she seems each night. I pray to God and thank Him for giving us a beautiful healthy baby. I pray that he blesses us and guides us to be better parents. Then my mind wanders and I begin to think. I think about how lucky I am. Lucky to have an incredibly supportive husband, a loving marriage, a great job that enables us to have a beautiful house and food on the table and and a life that I am thankful to live. It’s during these quiet times that it dawns on me. During the craziness of the day, I often forget to live in the moment.
You see, I’m a planner by nature, so I’m always planning 10 steps ahead. What’s the next phase for McKenzie, what should she be doing, what will she be doing by 18 months, when do we switch her to a toddler bed, should we put the house on the market, when we get a new house what color should I paint it, what career choices should I make, and when will our family become a family of four? As you can see, a million things run through my mind throughout the day. Maybe it’s the nature of being a Mom, but I’m sure more of it is my Type A personality.
It’s during those quiet times each night that I find myself thinking. Thinking that I should be happy with where I am. To live in the moment. To be happy with where we are right now. To stop wishing for the next stage, for the next house, for the next job. I cherish these quiet moments with McKenzie. It causes me to slow down. To sit quietly, to think and to reflect.
It’s at that moment that I realize I am exactly where I should be. In this house, with my baby in my arms, and my husband in the next room. It doesn’t matter what degrees I have or what job I hold. It doesn’t matter that we live 45 minutes away from our families or that we have an incredibly long commute to work. What matters is that we have a life that is perfect for us. Each night, I make a conscious decision to live in the moment, to stop thinking, to stop worrying, and to start enjoying the life we have right now and to give thanks for it all.