Oh bedtime. How I love you and hate you at the same time. I hate that it takes 15 tries to get my daughter to go upstairs to begin the process of getting her to bed. I hate the struggle to put her pjs on. I hate having to force her to brush her teeth. But I love you much more than I hate you.

I love getting into my daughter’s bed at the end of every day to spend some quiet time with her. I love the special conversations we seem to have when we’re snuggled up in her blankets together. I love when she puts her sweet, soft arms around me and says “I love you mommy.”

Each night I sing her the same exact song I’ve been singing for at least 3 years. I don’t want to count how many times that means I’ve sung it but she never goes to bed (while at my house) without hearing my unique version of Hush Little Baby. I’ve sung it even when our nighttime routine has gone badly, I’ve sung it while gritting my teeth, I have always made sure she hears it, in the good times and the challenging times.

And it amazes me that as soon as I start to sing to her she yawns, her eyes gloss over and she instantly relaxes. I am in awe of how something as simple as my voice and this silly song I made up years ago instantly makes her feel comforted and loved. What an incredible power we parents have to soothe our children.

As soon as I say “snuggle in” she turns into me and my heart is so full that I’m not sure it can hold much more love. These are the moments that make all the hard stuff about parenting worthwhile.