Is it wrong that I love my children the most when they are asleep?
I mean, sure I love them all the time, but they’re just so much cuter when they’re not talking back, or asking me for the thousandth snack of the day, or climbing all over me when I’m trying to do something else. And is there anything sweeter than their dark eyelashes resting on pink cheeks, flushed from a day in the sun? Their mouths slightly open in a soft snore? And their fingers loosely curled at their side? This is why the last thing I do at night, before I go to bed, is to peek in their room. I used to tell myself it was to reassure myself that they’re safe, so I could sleep peacefully. But I think it may be to refuel for the next day. I know that tomorrow will bring some not-so-lovable moments (from all of us) and without an occasional (OK, make that daily) reminder, I might slip for a moment and forget that none of the rest of the day would mean anything without them in it.
I used to think, before I had children, that good moms always love their kids. Now I’ve come to understand that good moms do always love their kids, but sometimes they may not feel like they love them. Fortunately for all of us, kids have short memories. Today, they don’t even remember when I snapped at them yesterday because they rejected the fruit smoothies I made,
on the grounds of excessive banana levels in the mix. Perhaps, while I’m peeking in their room at night, remembering how wonderful they are, those lovey feelings filter into their dreams and miraculously remove any lingering hard feelings from the day?
My husband doesn’t feel the need to look at them before bed. I think this is because he hasn’t spent the majority of his day with them. He doesn’t need a reminder of how much he loves them. He gets to think happy thoughts of them all day long, then come home to their ecstatic welcome. I’m not saying I wish I were away from them all day like he is. I’m just saying their early bedtime may not be entirely for their own benefit.
(In the time it’s taken me to write this, I’ve responded to two requests for snacks, as well as an emergency involving a stuffed animal and my 6 year old’s toe.)
I suppose I shouldn’t feel so bad. Even the Bible tells us that God’s mercies are new every morning. Perhaps He looks at us the same way while we sleep.