On not blinking

My daughter turned three this summer and her final coup d’etat as a two-year-old was to refuse to ever willingly take another nap.  I say willingly because there are those naps that come upon her like a stealth ninja any time we are traveling anywhere by car after the hour of 1 p.m.  Then, the nap is on.

I have occasionally mourned the loss of a 2-3 hour chunk of time to myself on the days that we have together.  The effectiveness with which I use such a chunk of time should impress; if properly motivated, I can speed clean the downstairs, prep dinner, fold and iron clothes while watching a movie, and take a nap.  Or perhaps skip right to the nap.  The choice was totally mine.  Those days are gone now.

But with the forfeiture of my mid-day me-time came an unintended consequence: every once in a great, great while, when it is late in the day and Mia is a special kind of tired, she sleeps in my arms.  And after the last year or two, when my attempts at nuzzling are typically met with her tiny hand shoving my face away, this is a welcome and unexpected turn.  To sit with her taking a quick snooze in my arms, her breath warming my neck, however brief, is worth the surrender of countless hours of me-time.

Which brings me, in a round-about way to this.  Mia has been cared for by both of her grandmothers while we work, God bless their hearts for all eternity, but I have seen the signs that she is more than ready for a regular bit of time among her peers.  Our church offers a day of child care per week, so I signed her up, and today was her first day.

I bought her a new top, and selected her outfit with care, although we disagreed on the footwear.  She won this round.  I’m certain this is not the first time we will disagree on her attire.

The lovely Mia, perparing to take the day-care by storm

The lovely Mia, preparing to take the day-care by storm

Two years ago, this child was turning one.  Two years from now, she enters kindergarten.  These years slip by at an alarming pace.  Each day I work against my basic nature and force myself to slow down, breathe, and take them in.

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About Joyce

40-year-old university advisor, 10-years married with two small children, trying to do it all and have it all and still manage the occasional social interaction through the wonderful world of blogging.
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14 Responses to On not blinking

  1. Cute kid!
    Losing the nap certainly has its good and bad points. Glad you have found an especially good point. Enjoy the bonding time.

  2. Sis says:

    she is adorable. I have a 3 yr old who doesn’t nap anymore too!

    • Joyce says:

      Thank you! The thing is, she needs to nap! Or maybe it’s just that I need to nap 🙂 I guess it doesn’t matter, because it’s not happening.

      • Sis says:

        Sometimes I move her bedtime up an hour to avoid the end of the day fussies. Sometimes I just put them in their rooms for “quiet time” with toys and I shut their door so they can’t open it. If they don’t sleep it’s okay, but I still get a break.

      • Joyce says:

        She passed out last night, and early. Yes!

  3. Sofia says:

    She’s so sweet AND funky! I remember I disagreed with my way of dressing since I was that small too! I think my mum wanted me in frilly girly frocks while I only wanted jeans and t-shirts. Enjoy these moments while she’s that age… with or without naps 😉

  4. She is so darn CUTE!! oh boy how it flies, all that time. I remember the naps ending and all that stuff. I love to read this because although my kids seem like giants compared in their leaps of age difference it really was just like yesterday when I was in your spot. I think she will love hanging out with some friends during the day.

    • Joyce says:

      She had a great time, and CRASHED that night! I am trying to heed everyone’s warnings about how quickly it all passes. I’ve been training my brain to be “in the moment” so I don’t miss out on all these things while I’m busy worrying about all the other things!

  5. Valerie says:

    How nice that her grandmothers have kept her! I bet she has really enjoyed that time. 😀
    Maggie and Joshua both stopped taking their naps around 3 1/2 because there bedtimes were getting too late. Once I cut the nap, evenings were LOVELY! Of course, afternoons were longer… 😉

    • Joyce says:

      My MIL kept my son too. When he was almost 2 I put him in a Christian day care two days a week, and slowly increased his days over time. With my daughter, my mom was living here by now, so she and my MIL took turns. I honestly don’t know how other parents do it when they both have to work away from home. For on thing, it is more expensive than you can imagine. For another thing, it is really, really hard handing your child over to strangers.

      I must admit, evenings are really nice. She was staying up waaaaay too. So late that I would go to bed as soon as I got her to bed. Now, I have a tiny bit of time to myself in the evenings. Granted, the time to myself is usually spent cleaning, but at least I’m cleaning in peace 🙂

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