I wake up most mornings, thoughts running through my head. Though the morning routine rarely changes and my schedule is almost always memorized, I mentally run through all of it anyway – often more than once. Sometimes as I stand at the counter cutting strawberries as Miles chimes “more more” behind me or take a few sips of coffee I find myself thinking about the long day that lies ahead.
I really should know better, because generally before I know it it is time to head back home from work. On the car ride I play through the evening routine: dinner, bath (usually), play, sometimes a small snack, Pocoyo and bedtime. More often than not, by the time the the twins’ bedtime rolls around, I am ready. Toddlers are constantly moving. Even more so with two.There is a good chance I’ve been running around all day and there is probably still more to be done once they are sleeping. I don’t really look forward to the “fight” of toothbrushing and sometimes find myself sighing at the bookshelf of books wondering which one I’d like to read for the millionth time to an audience who still seems to really care less. (On the other hand, perhaps I will wish for this when they reach the age when we’ve finished book number 4 and they are begging for “one more!”)
Before the twins were born my parents gave us a set to go on the bedside table that went with the theme of the room. It had two book holders, a picture frame and a musical snow globe. The snow globe sat untouched for over a year until Miles took some interest in it and responded to its song by bringing it back over to us to play it again. After that, I started winding it up before I left the room for the night. It was cute, but not a song I recognized and so held no particular sentiment to me. This went on for a few weeks until one night I remembered an old music box from my childhood that had been sitting on their dresser, also generally untouched, save for the few times it was picked up to dust under.
I wound it up.
The first night or two I simply let it play, but soon I found myself singing the lyrics to myself while I tucked them in.
Sing a song
Then I began singing it to them while I walked back and forth, fixing blankets, retrieving stuffed animals, offering head rubs and a couple belly tickles.
Sing out loud
After a few nights I began to really look forward to these last few moments before the end of the day. I picked Abby up out of her crib and danced with her while I sang. She laid her head on my shoulder. I picked Miles up out of his crib and did the same, or “kissed” his cheeks with a stuffed animal while he laid down giggled.
Sing out strong
It wasn’t long before this became my favorite part of the day. No matter how stressed I feel, how tired I am, how ready I am to sit for a few minutes. No matter how distracted I feel or how many things left on the to do list, those few moments are my time – our time. Sometimes Miles dances with me, sometimes he stays comfy in his crib. Regardless, he utters the sweetest sounds of contentment as I hold him or run my fingers through his hair. Abby has come to expect it now and will start to stand as I put Miles back down and walk over to her crib, arms outstretched. Sometimes she lays her head on my shoulder, sometimes she says “hi”, sometimes she tries to sing along with me. I’ve started cherishing these few verses each night, these snuggles before bedtime. No matter how bad the day, I feel at peace, and I think they do too. I think about how I hope that they will grow up happy, find something to be passionate about. I hope they will be themselves whoever that might be, without worrying what others think. I think about how how much they’ve changed me, and how I hope I’ll be a good role model. How I hope I’ll be able to find the right balance between love, discipline, expectation and freedom. Mostly though, I enjoy them, and hope that one day they’ll remember I sang to them.
Don’t worry if its not good enough
For anyone else to hear
Sing a song