Three new babies have blessed our family in the last few months. My young cousins post pictures of drooling faces and bright eyes daily. There is a ping of heartache as I am reminded there will be no more babies in my house for a very long time. I am also reminded of the tiring dance of early motherhood, juggling wake and sleep. I long for the excuse to sneak a nap in the middle of the day, leave a pile of laundry without guilt or order take-out one more night in a row, just so I can stare another minute at my baby’s sleeping profile, breathe in the perfume of new life and possibility. I realize now how light my load was when the girls were babies. Nap schedules, meal times, play dates, learning opportunities and time with my husband just fell into place, props laid out, waiting for my direction. Only my time-table really mattered. They were too little to have an opinion, too young to have a plan.
But not now.
Now they make their own schedules, create their own chaos and activities. They definitely have their own opinions about everything. Each of the girls grab a piece of life, toss it into the air and wait for me to figure out how to keep it in motion. I’m not only juggling their daily activities, but all of their future dreams and aspirations. My arms are so tired, muscles aching for a break, but if I take my eyes off for one second, I risk dropping everything.
There are moments void of the heaviness, moments that remind me why I choose a circus life. When I catch a glimpse of gratitude or joyfulness in my child’s eyes , I am transported back to the early days of motherhood. It is in those moments that I feel invincible, capable of juggling as many balls as life throws at me.
This post was inspired by the word JUGGLE: 3: to handle or deal with usually several things (as obligations) at one time so as to satisfy often competing requirements <juggle the responsibilities of family life and full-time job — Jane S. Gould>