One of the most magical parts of parenting is the innate ability to comfort my child.
Every night my daughter and I snuggle in her bed and I sing her the same lullaby I’ve been singing for the past 7 years. No matter how wound up she is, as soon as I start singing she settles down, gets herself all cozy under her blankets, and asks me to scratch her back. I cherish this part of my day because I’m amazed at how instantly calming our nightly ritual is for her, and it feels like such honor that my presence is so comforting.
Sometimes when she’s having an explosion of big emotions and can’t calm herself down, I’ll hold her really tight and remind her that she is safe and loved. I can feel her body relax and her sobs become whimpers as she starts to come back to herself. And in those moments I’m reminded that sometimes she just needs me to come down to her level and offer peace, and that doing so gives her the ability to self-regulate again. A mother’s hug is a powerful thing.
I also cherish the every day opportunities to provide comfort, like when after a long day of school and after care, she climbs on my lap on the couch and I get to stroke her hair.
Or when we are driving in the car and she’s a little unsettled so I stick my arm between the front seats so I can reach her hand to hold it.
These moments make all of the hard parts of parenting worth it.