52: Stillness

52 Week 4  

She wanted me to color.  It was a quiet Sunday afternoon, the house unusually still.  The toddler was sleeping, and CJ was working at his desk in the basement.  I wanted to crawl into bed and take a nap myself, but I sat and watched her stencil shapes and draw pictures of Fancy Nancy and her family.  She didn't really want me to color with her, I realized as time passed; she simply wanted me to be with her, to watch her, to pay attention.  It was hard.  I kept thinking about the shirts I could've been ironing in the basement, kept turning on my phone to send a quick text to a friend.  I'm very aware that being constantly busy with small children is hard for me; I crave silence, stillness, peace.  But on Sunday, I realized that being still is hard for me too, that slowing down to simply be with my little girl required real effort of a different sort.  To pay full attention to her, to focus solely on her interests and desires, requires both a stillness and a degree of selflessness that are difficult for me to muster, but so very important for us both.