An excellent wife who can find?...
She rises while it is still night.
Proverbs 31:10, 15
I have moments of realization in motherhood.
Like when I realized why my own mother would never deliver our clean laundry to our rooms, but rather make us come collect it from the neat piles on her bed.
Or why my mom would declare at 8:00 pm that "the kitchen was closed" and we weren't allowed to dirty any more dishes.
Or why my own friends would cut our coffee dates short and herd their kids home for nap time as if their lives depended on it.
I never understood why generations of mothers would choose to steal out of bed before the rest of their families, even before the sun itself had risen, when they could stay beneath the covers for a few more moments of sleep.
But now I understand. It's because starting the day with a toddler who had soaked through his pajamas and sheets is no way to start the day. Just like starting the day with a mad race to get everyone dressed and fed doesn't make for a peaceful mindset. And wrestling a baby, kicking and screaming, to change a dirty diaper first thing in the morning just sets me up for the grumpies.
Today I got up before anyone else. I'm not sure how it happened. I was lying awake in bed and I knew I wasn't going to fall back asleep, so I got up. I turned off the baby monitor so my husband wouldn't hear our two year old stirring. I put on my slippers and robe. I went down stairs and made a cup of pour-over. And then I sat in silence with the Word of God.
I inhaled and exhaled, I contemplated, I prayed, and I listened. And thirty minutes later when my son woke up I didn't groan and try to tune him out. I wasn't annoyed by his existence. I was ready, and even happy to great him. He sat in my lap and started to make the sign of the cross, as we have taught him to do, and as he does so often throughout the day. And I thought, this is truly the way to start the day.