Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Hush Little Baby

We have this beautiful book by Sylvia Long, "Hush Little Baby". Perhaps you have it, too. To the tune of the familiar song, this sweet, soft bunny mother weaves a quilt of the natural world around her baby bunny... mama's going to show you a hummingbird, an evening sky, the cricket call, etc. It's a beautiful, sweet song, and the illustrations are dear. Today I read this book to Aoife 9 times in a row. Without one, single break. This was after we had read it twice in a row, and before we had lunch and then read it 3 more times.
This is the beautiful part about this experience. Each time she said, "Again", I was happy to. I turned back to page one, and just started again. Liam was playing campout with Phoebe, we were curled in a chair, why not? Why not again? Each run through takes about 3 minutes. The mesmerised look on her face, the soft, warm slump of her against my chest, why would I ever say no?
I know there are days that I would have. Where I would have thought 8 times was enough, and gently encouraged another book, and maybe even carefully chosen another singing book to appeal especially to her. But not today. Today I am grateful that I felt so grounded and so peaceful that I could just read this book to her, 14 times in total so far today, and feel really glad about making my baby happy.

I know that these days can be rare, where I can just be at the one year old level, and tune myself so completely into being settled at home doing "nothing". To resist the urge to go out and "do something", and to realize that on some days, reading the same book 14 times can make the best morning ever.

1 comment:

Team Harris said...

That is so sweet! And what a gorgeous, gorgeous picture!! I have had the same experience with my little boy. I can remember reading "Goodnight Moon" to him over and over and over until I thought I just couldn't read it one more time... and then again. And eventually, he had it memorized and would "read" it to me. Or I'd start a line and he'd finish it. I have such fond memories of that.

But you know, it's more than just reading it over and over. I wonder what is happening in their little brains when we do that... what connections are being made. I honestly believe that when they are older and they hear that same song or story, the good and snuggly feelings will come back to them of being cuddled and feeling safe and secure in the arms of someone who loves them. Maybe I'm full of marbles, but that's what I think.

It is for that same reason that I sometimes will sing the same song or lullaby over and over to a baby in the nursery if they are very upset. Because I hope that some day when they hear that lullaby again, they will remember being held or at least feeling secure!