Nov 26 2014
I don’t think I realized when she began sleeping through the night. Sure, she’s done it on and off for the last few years, the rollercoaster of toddler sleep cycles: alternating bouts of smooth, uphill climbs with no night-waking at all, interspersed with sudden, steep declines marked by nightmares at 2 a.m., 3 a.m., and 4 a.m. in rapid succession.
But the other night it struck me that I couldn’t even call to mind her last mid-night visit. Couldn’t remember the last time I was stirred from sleep by the warmth of her breath rolling across my cheek, whispers of “Mama,” and bright eyes peering in the blackness just above the mountain of blankets.
And it’s exactly as it should be. This year, she started public school, which means she hasn’t aged only in years, but seems to age in maturity on an almost hourly basis. More than that, she’s tired. Physically and emotionally depleted in ways I never imagined were possible at the budding age of 5. And so she sleeps. Long, deep, replenishing slumbers, often waking later than the rest of the house. Read the rest of this entry →
Nov 14 2014
My 5-year-old daughter was supposed to earn her yellow belt in karate last month. She’d prepared for months for this moment. When it was time to be tested, she stood proudly before her instructor. She kicked and punched and upper-cut like a pro. There was no doubt that she was ready to move forward.
But, when it was time to receive her new belt, she froze.
“I don’t want to give up my old belt. I’ll miss it too much.” Her lower lip quivered as she spoke. Read the rest of this entry →
Jun 6 2014
This post is part of our Torah commentary series. This Shabbat we read Parashat B’ha’alotkha. To read a summary of the portion and learn more, click here.
I recently read something I loved in a book about Buddhism and parenting:
Impermanence, the fact that all things change, can be a mother’s best friend. Read the rest of this entry →
May 9 2014
This post is part of our Torah MOMentary series. This Shabbat we read Parashat B’har. To read a summary of the portion and learn more, click here.
“Strawberries are yucky.”
“I don’t WANT to sleep in a crib.”
“Doc McStuffins is my favorite.”
“I don’t like spring time. I just like summer.” Read the rest of this entry →
Apr 1 2014
Every spring I remember; every Passover I celebrate.
I have mostly forgotten the Passover that fell right before my wedding. I don’t remember who led those seders. I don’t recall what was served for dinner. I was too busy thinking of the last minute wedding details (Did we need programs? When would the yarmulkes be ready? How did I go about changing my name?) And then I realized that I’d miss the whole holiday. I ceased thinking about my impending departure from the single world. I sipped my wine and tried to relax, and focused on what was important.
Two years later, I sat at my husband’s aunt’s table. We had been trying for a baby for a few months, without results. I wanted to take my mind off my disappointment, and enjoy the evening with my family. I poured a glass of wine in anticipation of the start of the seder. My husband’s little cousins were wrestling under the table. The older one hit his head, and the whole table shook like a California earthquake. My wine glass wobbled, tipped, and splashed all over me. The stain would stubbornly cling to my blouse after several washings. By the time I threw it out a week later, I didn’t mind. It wouldn’t have fit for long, anyway. I was pregnant. Read the rest of this entry →
Dec 5 2013
My son turns 4 on Saturday.
He is suddenly long-legged and lean, leaping into the air. He makes up songs and chats on the phone. He crouches down in the grass and looks for snails with his flashlight.
He is Spiderman.
And suddenly, somehow, in between non-stop nursing and not sleeping, in between crying and cooing, my plucked-chicken newborn baby boy grew eyelashes and eyebrows.
Last night, in the late hours when moonlight fills the room and the jasmine green tea has kicked in, he joined me on the futon while I worked. Read the rest of this entry →
Sep 23 2013
My 4-year-old is absolutely obsessed with books. Mainly books about trucks–especially fire trucks. He wants me to read to him all day long. He also loves Little Bunny Foo Foo.
“Mom, can you just read it four more times before bed? Pullleeeaassse?
It does this mama’s heart proud to see her kids enjoy a book. Even if it is Little Bunny Foo Foo.
My eldest son also loves a good book, but now at 13 years old, the days where he crawls up into my lap and asks for me to read to him are long gone. I no longer pull his head close to me and breath his boyish smell of sweat and dirt and play dough. He doesn’t need my help brushing his teeth, getting dressed, or lacing up his shoes. He hates most of the clothes I pick out for him (even though I’m certain I have better taste than he does). He shrugs and feigns pulling away if I try to give him a hug, even though he has a smile on his face. Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 13 2013
Jared devouring his first cupcake on his 1st birthday.
The other night I took my daughter’s pink Disney Princess booster seat off the kitchen chair to clean it. As it turns out, that was the last night she used it. She says she doesn’t need it anymore, her big eyes in her tiny head poking up above the table.
That’s how it always goes, my husband says. One day something is super important and the next you’re deciding whether to donate it or sell it on Craigslist.
We’re hypersensitive to the finality of even the most trivial things because our second and last baby just turned 1. As he starts to formulate his first words, we’re stuck trying to find our own, too–ones to describe the sadness and yet slight elation around knowing there will never be another infant we made in the house. Read the rest of this entry →
Oct 23 2012
As I cradled my 7-hour old dark-haired beauty in my weary arms, I imagined this day. My pre-teen (the term “tween” had yet to be invented) and I would have a quiet lunch in a café, talk about the exciting changes that awaited her, and then head to Nordstrom for her very first bra-fitting. Like with so many parts of parenting, what I imagined bore scant resemblance to reality. And not for one moment did I ever imagine that our outing would take place in her 10th summer. Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 31 2012
Close your eyes. Relax. Focus on your breath. Be present. Be in the moment.
Those directions for meditation could well apply to parenthood.
It goes fast. It really, really goes fast.
Be present so that one day you’ll remember, and be glad.
I knew, even at the time, that the wonderful time I had raising small children was fleeting. Even during the very hard times, I somehow realized that this was the most important, joyful time of my life and I should treasure it. I tried very hard to be in the moment. To be conscious of the wonder.
I somehow knew that even though some days crawled by, the time would fly. Read the rest of this entry →