When times were hard, my parents used to say, “This too shall pass.” I didn’t realize then that this applies to the good times, too.
As evening falls, I lie down beside my infant daughter on the bed, offer her my breast. She nurses intently, yet dreamily, eyes half closed. Occasionally she pulls off and gazes at me for a moment, then shares a sparkling smile. The night ahead of us is shrouded in darkness.
I give myself to you, my daughter. Mysteriously my body makes sweet milk for you, still all the food you need. As you begin to stir restlessly, then give a cry of need, I come awake and turn to you, drawing your small warm body close to mine. Sometimes my back aches from lying this way for so long. Sometimes I want so much to turn away, to turn over. Sometimes when you cry I sigh impatiently, startled from the depths of slumber, or not yet asleep after the last time you awoke. Sometimes you overwhelm me with your sweetness and beauty. At what other time will we share such moments? When this is over and you move on to other things, it will never come again.
So, although I often look forward to the day when she will sleep through the night, I am not impatient for it. For this too shall pass… and too quickly.