There isn’t much that I adore more than a man who is truly involved with his children. Pop isn’t just dedicated to his baby girls, but he adores his wife as well and he so beautifully balances his humor with his softer, more reflective side.
When I invited him to come share a small moment with me here on Small Moments Mondays, he read through all of the previous posts and emailed me that he had “sawdust in his eyes.” He felt the same way that I do about this series … that the love and appreciation that we each feel for those we hold dear is paramount.
Thank you, Pop, for contributing to the sawdust factor here. I think the world of you and Small Moments Mondays is better for having you as a part of it.
Before my feet hit the ground… – by Pop
Last week, we were getting ready for a long Sunday. We were going to be gone for most of the day because we had church and then a baby shower to attend. To complicate matters, I bought a few items for church that I needed to bring that day along with some budget requests. My wife and I were so proud of ourselves as we packed the car with snacks for the kids, a Moby Wrap in case D2 (my second daughter, 7 months old, 19lb9oz) got too heavy to hold during the shower, the church equipment and budget requests, the gifts for the baby shower, and a few bottles of water and snacks for ourselves. When we were almost at church, my wife and I both smelled it: the smell of rotted sourdough bread mixed with spoiled milk that all parents of infants are familiar with.
When we arrived at church, we found that D2 dropped a BOMB and there was poop all over her and the carseat. As semi-veteran parents, scenes like this are less shocking and more commonplace, so I calmly took D2 out of the carseat, handed her to my wife and reached for the diaper bag.
“Honey, did you pack the diaper bag?” “No,” my wife replies, “I thought you packed it.” “No….I thought you left it in the car from our last trip.” We had a car full of stuff: gifts, snacks, etc…but we forgot the most important thing.
Just like my wife and I overlooked the most important bag without realizing it, my favorite small moment is one that is really important, and yet is easily and often overlooked, especially by us parents: beholding my sleeping spouse the moment I wake up. Ok, that sounds more than a tad creepy, so let me quickly explain.
As I get older, I find things gradually increasing. My waistline, the number of chins I have, the bags under my eyes, my responsibilities, the bills I have to pay, and most especially, my to-do list. And all these things battle for my attention first thing in the morning. “What reports are due today?” “Where do I have to take the kids?” “Do we have a meeting/dinner with anyone tonight?” These are just some of the questions that race through my head from the first waking moment as I begin my routine of getting myself & my kids ready for the day. Consequently, the first half hour in my household is a flurry of activity.
After nearly 3 years of parenting, I wish I could say our mornings are a well-choreographed symphony of awesomeness. But I can’t. Our less than smooth mornings usually include yelling (think Fred Flintstone shouting, “Wilmaaaaaaa!”), the words, “I have to pee” shortly after getting in the car, and turning back once we realize we forgot the diaper bag. Yup. Coffee isn’t the only thing brewing in our home in the morning; we brew stress fresh every day.
And that’s where my favorite small moment comes in. Will it prevent the inevitable chaos that is the morning routine? No. But like a day where someone gives you a compliment or your kid tells you, “I love you” without prompting or bribing, it’s a great start.
Thinking back to our honeymoon, I remember our first morning together so vividly. The sun was peaking through the curtains, and I woke up and looked over at my wife. She was absolutely stunning on our wedding day, but somehow, she was even more beautiful that morning. I smiled thinking that, God willing, I get to spend the rest of my days with this woman.
Some guys may disagree, but for me, the first moment in the morning is when my wife is most beautiful. No makeup, no worries or concerns on her face – just her: the woman I vowed to spend the rest of my life with.
Looking at her in that peaceful state, I feel renewed. No matter what the days before have been like or what the days ahead may hold, I know we’ll make it through together, and there’s just no better way to start my day.
And yet, it’s something I can so easily overlook as I manically attack my to-do list.
Before my feet hit the ground and I go about my day, I want to stare lovingly at the woman who makes life worth it.
So tomorrow morning, look over at your spouse and enjoy it. But not for too long – you have a lot to do today.
Now, please go over and visit Pop. Be sure to read A Letter to My Daughters: U Cant Haz Internetz, I love You, Dad, and Instantly Social? Dislike! I promise, time spent with Pop is time well spent! Also, he’s a great friend to have on Twitter and you can follow him here.