"I don't wanna nap. I don't wanna nap!" Lovie whines while sprawled in my lap.
"I know baby doll," I whisper, my arms wrapped around her body.
"I don't wanna nap, I don't wanna nap."
"Shh, it's okay."
"I don't wanna nap, I don't wanna nap!"
"Will you sing with me?"
She whimpers a bit, whines some more, I start to softly sing our "special song" (You are my Sunshine).
She continues to whine and cry a bit but she doesn't move. She lays comfortably on me, my arms holding her up, my legs bouncing the chair back and forth. I'm reminded of when she was first born and would fit perfectly in my arms. She was so itty bitty. Her hair was so fine, so soft; her skin so milky.
She's so much bigger now. A little person who talks and makes jokes and has opinions. A little person who doesn't want to nap, doesn't want to miss a second of life.
After a couple minutes of singing the same lines over and over again, she stops whining, stops crying and her eyes get heavier and heavier before finally closing shut. I continue to sing softly, tears streaming down my face. She completely trusts me to take care of her. She looks to me for comfort. She looks to me to help guide her to do the right thing. She says she doesn't want to nap, but she knows I know she does.
I hold her a bit longer, soaking in every bit of the stillness of the moment, knowing it won't last forever, knowing there will come a time when she won't want my arms around her, when she won't come to me for comfort for every little thing.
I have so much to do- laundry, dusting, vacuuming, cleaning, writing, editing, eating, sleeping, TVing- but none of it matters. None of it matters except for one thing: her.
I slowly stop bouncing the chair, stop singing the words. I slowly stand up and gently lift her up and over and into the crib. She whimpers for a moment and quickly silents as she sleeps oh so peacefully for a couple hours.