Enough is enough

If I knew I could hit a baby to make it stop crying in the middle of the night like I hit the snooze button on my alarm, chances are good I probably would.  That’s the kind of mom I am, though I hate to admit it, between the hours of 12 am and 6 am.  God protects babies from people like me by not installing snooze buttons on the newborn models.

And a long-suffering God graces undeserving people like me with 4 am wake up calls that go like this:

I squint at my phone to determine the time.  3:49 am.  A baby is hungry.

But hungry for more than just milk.

She drinks in my face which is hovering above her bathed in icy light from the phone screen.  A smile of pure joy cracks open the planes of her face and she squawks and chortles at me as if to say, “Hey!  You’re awake now too?!  Awesome!”  She converses for me awhile in this language of coos and squeaks and grins, and while I can’t speak the language fluently, I catch enough to get the idea: “You are my everything.”

For these minutes that wake steals from sleep, I am everything this baby needs to be delighted.  To be filled.

I think of my list of “enough” and know it would have to include a larger version of my bank account, oodles of dates stuffing the month’s calendar, and bonus spins of the clock hand each day.   Then, in the quiet, coo-filled night, I am suddenly deeply, immensely grateful for this wake up call.

I can redefine enough.

I can redefine it to the size of life that can be illuminated in the sphere of a phone’s glow.

The baby empties me to fill herself.  She gets enough.  She goes back to sleep.

And then…

…Because this is real life, the nitty-gritty not perfect life that’s all mine...

She wakes up and throws up.

….Because sometimes, even for babies, enough is enough.

Find more thoughts on Enough over at Lisa Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday.  In whatever 5 minutes we writers can steal in our day, we jot down our unedited thought’s on the prompt and share.

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  1. Jamie said:

    sigh…I love this! I love the memories your images provoke in me. It’s such an exhausting time, but it is such a sweet time! I love the line “the baby empties me to fill herself.” beautiful!! AND I love love love how you keep it real :)

    July 20, 2012
  2. Big Friend said:

    At least she threw up on Big Friend which should have preserved some of the magical moment for you. :)

    Beautiful post. Amazingly, each post somehow manages to be better than the last.

    July 20, 2012
  3. Nancy said:

    Glad Big Friend was there to share the moment. You two constantly amaze me. You post reminded me of 2 am feedings with Melissa. They became my favorite because it was just the two of us without interruption. I had lots of 1:1 time with Kellie, but it was harder to get with Melissa. So glad you are appreciating even the sleepless times. Love you. Can’t wait to see all of you.

    July 20, 2012
  4. Jo said:

    I wish you enough…. : )

    July 20, 2012
  5. susan said:

    loved this! beautifully captures that draining 4am feeding and the blessing it can represent. i’m thankful those days are behind me, but i remember.

    July 20, 2012
  6. Found you via five minute Fridays. Great post! I despised those 4am feedings. It felt like that season of life lasted forever. This is my first visit to your blog and I like it. :-)

    July 21, 2012

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