The other day was just insane. In addition to “business as usual,” I had been working with a friend non-stop to prepare for a school fundraiser that we were hosting that weekend, and we had literally been on our feet that entire day, prepping food for 200 people. Tennis lessons, drama practice, park time with the littlest, grocery shopping, and helping with homework. It was literally non-stop. By the time I finished the laundry that afternoon, I was done.
I was assessing how to move forward with the evening, unsure if I had it in me to get the kids ready for and up to bed. There was still an hour until bedtime, which seemed like five hours in my mind. As I was cleaning up from dinner, Grace announced, “Mom, when you finish the dishes, come up to my room.” I wrapped up my kitchen duty and trudged upstairs, finding the boys wrestling over a Lego piece, disputing its ownership. Pretty sure that I was likely to say something I would later regret, I walked down the hall toward Grace’s room, only to find a sign on her door.
And there it was. A rescue, waiting for me. Grace nestled me into her pillows, put a robe over my shoulders and a sleep mask over my eyes, and spent the next thirty minutes massaging my shoulders, rubbing my feet. She even had music playing, you guys. In that room, smelling of the vanilla perfume she used as a massage oil, I found peace. I fell asleep, drooling, until the crazies wandered in, wondering where I had gone and apparently having worked out the Lego drama.
The next thirty minutes played out as they seemingly always do at bedtime. There’s always one kid who lollygags about brushing his teeth. There’s always one more book to read. There’s always one more cup of water to get. But, I knew I could soldier through from that point on, sustained by the mental space I held just a few minutes before in the gold-star slippers that Grace had placed on my feet. Moms and Dads, whether you find it in your daughter’s room, or at the spa, or in your own meditation, it’s clear that sometimes all the ammo we need is to just relax.