Recently while at my daughter's home my granddaughter, Averie was having an emotional "melt down." Sometimes it's hard to figure out what is causing such distress when babies seem to cry for "no reason." Even though her tummy was full, her diaper was dry and she just woke up from a nap, there seemed to be nothing that would quell her crying. I took her in my arms, patted her back, spoke to her softly, and walked back and forth across the room multiple times while her screaming continued.
"Mom, how can you stay so calm when she's like this?" my daughter Kellie asked.
"Honey, I wasn't always this calm. When you and your sister were this way, it was a different story. I guess I'm just able at this point in life to relax and enjoy the now" I replied.
As I reflect back, I spent so much time as a young mom looking toward the next stage of my child's development that I sometimes missed what was right before my eyes. To be honest, I am not much of a "baby" person. I tend to enjoy the more interactive toddler stage. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that, but it's true. I'm not like some women who absolutely LOVE the baby stage. You know the type-the woman of any age who "ooohs" and "aaahs" over any baby she sees and rushes over to get a closer look or ask if she might hold the baby for just a moment, to get her fix. That was just not me.
When I became a Nana a year ago, everything changed. I was instantly transformed. Now, each stage is a gift and it just keeps getting better. Oh how I wish I could give young mothers the gift of enjoying the now. I wish I had savored each and every stage of my children's lives a little more instead of looking ahead.
I wonder, what "enjoying the now" might look like in your life? What is it that you enjoy right now in your child's life, your spouses or even your own life? Be specific. No matter what stage of life you may be in, there is something to enjoy. It takes only two ingredients: attentiveness and thankfulness. Give it a try--you'll be glad you did!