I hugged Phoebie in my arms as she drifted off to dreamland.
It’s been a long day.
Phoebie went through a number of not-so-good episodes with me throughout the day and by bedtime, I was ready to explode. Among the many things that happened during the day, there was the time that she said she was very hungry for dinner but when dinner was ready, she was busy with something else on the table instead of her food. Then there was the time I told her to go and brush her teeth but she played with her fingers instead (don’t ask me how) and got herself hurt and started whining.
These two incidents, piled up with a few others that happened throughout the day, my patience had run out by bed time.
It was late and Phoebie was crying and whining at the same time. Breyen was obviously tired and I had to put him in bed. I told Phoebie that she had five minutes to calm down while I tucked her brother in bed. Thankfully, Breyen was so tired that he dozed off in less than five minutes.
By now, Phoebie was silent in her room and I had had enough deep breaths to “recharge” my patience meter. I walked into her room and could tell that she was dozing off, having cried hard just minutes before.
“Do you need a hug?” I whispered.
Phoebie nodded slowly. I asked her to climb into my embrace.
“Mummy loves you very much. Do you know that?” I asked Phoebie.
She nodded slowly again, eyes closed.
“I want you to listen to my instructions because I love you very much and I don’t want you to get hurt. I’m sorry I shouted at you just now. Do you want me to hug you to sleep?” I said to Phoebie.
She nodded and hugged me tighter.
“I love you,” I whispered.
“I love you too,” Phoebie whispered back.
She must have been really tired because she dozed off in less than a minute.
I hugged Phoebie and looked at her as she slept in my arms. Sigh… I was so mad at her during the day. How and why did she keep repeating the same things I told her not to do?
Yet, I couldn’t bear for her to go to sleep all sad and feeling unwanted. I don’t know if she felt unwanted but I do remember feeling that way as a kid whenever my days ended on a terrible note with my parents. I didn’t want my daughter to feel the same way.
I can’t take back the harsh words I said to Phoebie throughout the day, but I pray that the long hug as she fell asleep lets her know that I love her no matter what happens during the day.