Maybe Your Two-Year Old Just Needs You - Sarah Mae
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Maybe Your Two-Year Old Just Needs You

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My oldest came to my room after bedtime and said, “Caroline keeps saying she needs you.”

I went upstairs and looked at my sweet little one, who is now four, curled up under her covers peacefully. I said, “Do you need me?” She nodded. I knelt down, crawled into bed with her, and snuggled up close. “Lullaby, and goodnight…” I softly began to sing. I rubbed her head and  nuzzled my nose into her hair, and felt the delicateness of her soft skin. She lay there precious and still, with heavy eyelids, and I kissed her head and thought, “How many times have I rushed bedtime? How many moments like this have I lost?”

And it was there in her bed in that quiet moment that I realized how much she needed me, and how much I had neglected that need.

When my straggly-haired hippie girl was only two-years old I did everything I could to get her to go to bed, but she wouldn’t stay put. Sometimes she would get out of bed 20 times, and just about every time she would say, “I just want to be with you.”

I thought she was disobeying, and I felt like I was going crazy because I was so tired and I just wanted my own time; I needed a break. So after trying all sorts of discipline techniques, after crying, after praying, I would sometimes get angry and I took it out on that little girl just trying to figure out how to be with her mama. Because that’s what it was about, she just needed me, maybe in bed with her, rubbing her head, singing to her, loving her; she just needed me to be with her. And all my fighting of it did nothing but cause pain and tears and regret.

I know this now, and so here is what I have to say to all you tired mamas out there:

I know you’re about worn out, and most days, bedtime can’t come soon enough. You need a break or you feel like you will lose. your. mind. Seriously, I know. But let me tell you, it hurts to lie down next to your baby and realize just how much you missed the ball when it came to her needs. It hurts when you remember how you thought you needed to discipline her when really, she just needed you to lie down and cuddle and comfort.

Do you remember when you were little and how you wanted your mom or dad to stay with you just a little while longer? Do you remember ever having your head rubbed and how good that felt? Did you ever get sung to?

I’m telling you friend, sometimes we need to just quit fighting and give in. I know there are nights you just can’t give anything else, and that’s okay, God knows. But on the nights you can push through just a little more, do it. Sing to your two-year old, snuggle down close in their bed, rub their head, nuzzle into their hair, and whisper, “You are a delight” (even if you don’t feel it). 

“You can go now, mama.” Caroline says.

I smile, roll off her bed, and quietly leave her room. She got her fill, and now she can sleep. Oh that girl, the wild one, she is truly a delight. I whispered those words to her so many times praying that they would eventually be true, and now, without a doubt, they are 100% true. She is utter joy to me.

She just needed to grow up a little bit.

And honestly, so did I.

Because what I know now that I didn’t know then, was that she just wanted me. Just how God made it so – a little one to want, to need her mama.

Just like your little one needs you.

Love, SM

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  • Shari

    Beautiful. Precisely what the Lord wanted me to know today. Thank you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/diane.kann Diane Kann

    How absolutely true! And it continues to be true as they grow older. Our children need our time and attention, no matter how tired or busy we are. If we don’t provide this emotional need, the world is ready to.

  • http://twitter.com/CSElkins christie elkins.

    LOVED! Snuggled my almost three year old a little longer last night after a whirlwind day. He slept beautifully last night 🙂

  • http://www.kmlogan.com/ KM Logan

    My little two year old is the same way right now, we have a special bed made up for her on our bedroom floor. She uses it a few times a week when she wakes in the middle of the night. It’s a happy medium.

    • Stacey S.

      We used to do this same thing, and our daughter would just help herself and not wake us. Beautiful thing!

      • http://www.kmlogan.com/ KM Logan

        We would try to snuggle in her toddler bed, or bring her in bed with us and no one was getting any sleep. Then my mother mentioned she used to let my sister sleep on their bedroom floor. Now we’re all happier at night. It’s amazing what just being close to mom can do.

  • http://twitter.com/MamaTheyCallMe Renee Stam

    I really understand this post, been there and sometime still there 🙂 Give more of you is not always easy, but it is worth it!

  • Stacey S.

    Oh, indeed! Never mind two, mine still need this at ages 10 and 7. Like you, Sarah Mae, I have learned to embrace these moments because even just 2 or 3 minutes satisfies them. It gives us the chance to speak and listen to one another and ironically, it’s been during these moments that my children unfold their deeper thoughts and feelings with me. I like to ask questions like, “What was the best part about today?”, “What challenged you the most?”, and “If you had a do-over today, what would it have been?” Sometimes they ask me to pray with them about an issue, sometimes not. I ‘tickle’ their backs, rub tight muscles, kiss foreheads, and hug them tight telling them how precious they are to me. I wouldn’t trade these moments for anything. I used to crave my own time, and still do, but I have found it to be worth going the extra 1/2 mile. My husband still thinks it’s a delay tactic, but then he’s a morning person. He is able to give similarly, just at the start of the day. I hope all the moms reading your post will find a way to embrace the bedtime moments. Blessings to all of you dear mamas!

    • http://www.poppycockreviews.com/ Cassie Gotto

      Shoot, I’m 20 years old and sometimes the only person who can make me feel better is my mama.

      • Karen Sylvester

        my baby girl is 28 and she and I feel exactly the same as you do <3

        • Jackie Marler

          My kids are 11 and 13, and they still absolutely cherish those few minutes of quiet time in bed. I rub their back and they tell me about what’s going on in their lives.. the stuff that doesn’t come out at the dinner table or on the drive to cheer practice or the skate park. Their fears, worries, the mean thing that kid said on the bus, or every tiny detail of the new skateboard trick or dance they learned. There are nights that I have too much going on to lay down with them, and I think it’s good that they have some ‘lonely’ nights as well, but I keep those to a minimum. Nothing is more important than staying in tune with my kids through these next 5-7 years while they have their eyes opened to both the wonders and cruelties of this crazy world.

          • Virginia Wolf

            I have picture of my mama holding me and snuggling me, oh how I miss those days. Even when I was older with teenagers of my own I would lay my head in her lap on the couch and she would brush my hair. I’m now 53 and I remember how Ioved those soft hands calming me when I was beat. I miss her still now that she is gone.

    • Shan K.

      Thank you for sharing this. I have an 8 yr. old son. We share all of the same reasons for doing this. Even on our craziest days these moments are so calm, clear, and precious. There is nothing like having those bonding moments.

  • http://housewifemama.com/ stephanie Kandray

    I couldn’t agree more! Sometimes they go to bed just fine after songs and kisses but some nights they just want a little more. It’s usually when they are so tired that they will fall asleep within 2 minutes of me rubbing their head anyways.

  • Heli

    Thank you, Sarah Mae. I really needed this reminder today.

  • http://www.OurStoriesGodsGlory.blogspot.com/ Elise Daly Parker

    It’s funny…my youngest, my 18 year old daughter, was struggling the other day. She has a lot on her mind, a lot of pressure, a lot of uncertainty as she faces leaving our nest and going off to college. She came in and sat on the floor of my bedroom; I was already in bed (bet that scenario is hard to imagine!). We were just talking about some of what she’s feeling and I actually asked her to hop up onto the bed with me! She didn’t and I was reminded of those precious years…one day they will seem like long ago!

    • Jenny

      I wanted to let you know how much your words touched me when I read them Elise. Even though she turned your offer down, continue to offer it in the future :). I’m 29 yrs old and there is nothing I long for more than my mama right now. We used to be so close but in the last few years she has entered a new stage in her life and I think she is “done” mothering. It hurts. I miss her and miss that relationship so much. I’m bawling right now typing this. I’m sure your 18 yr old might feel grown up and everything now, but she still, and always will, need her mama.

      • http://www.OurStoriesGodsGlory.blogspot.com/ Elise Daly Parker

        What an encouragement you are to me, Jenny! Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I am so sorry your mom has moved away from you. And I am truly convicted that I need to hang in there…and continue to offer my mothering to all my daughters, ages 35-18. I pray that your mom will know how much you love her and need her…and that whatever is keeping her from mothering you would stop. One day I was lamenting about how I didn’t feel loved by my girls. My husband said to me, “It’s not their job to love you. It’s your job to love them.” I didn’t like what he said, but I know it’s true. I am their mama. And I can’t worry about how much I’m feeling their love. Regardless, I have to continue to offer mine. (And of course, I know my girls do love me.) God bless you!

        • Jenny

          I was so excited to see a response from you! Thank you for writing me back:) I have five young children and life is busy for me everyday but as I’ve gotten older I’ve only just realized I need my mom more and more, not less like you think you will when you’re a teenager and so smart and “grownup”. I guess having children of my own has just shown me how much I still long to be held sometimes myself, or invited to hop onto my mom’s bed, or to have my own “mommy I just need you moments” like Sarah Mae wrote about. I’ve also been praying that whatever is going on in her life can change enough that I can have her back, but you’ve given me the idea that maybe she isn’t feeling as loved as I could make her feel either. I wonder if I try harder to show her my love, maybe she can open up with hers again. (Even though it IS her “job” to be the one doing the loving ;). Good advice your husband had, but parenting’s hard isn’t it? I’m the first to admit that.) Anyway, thank you for letting me talk your ear off. You’ve given me some good ideas, and some inspiration. I’ve been struggling with and praying about this for while so your comments have sparked ideas that have been truly answers to prayers. And your kind words have spoken a lot of peace to my heart. Thank you.

      • Ronda

        Pray ….pour your heart out to Jesus…..He said He would be our heavenly Father…. and meet our needs…(not in our timing sometimes)….. my mom moved on when i was 16,…I was just thinking today….how Jesus has held my hand through so many days continually since conception….He’s the only One who truly understands me because He’s always been there….He’s always there …..even when I haven’t realized or invited Him into my situation….but when I talk to Him later…He helps me because He was always there and understands my feelings and needs….He wanted to help earlier but wasn’t invited in….He is my stay…my anchor

  • Sarah Coller

    Thank you!

  • Jana Davila

    Goodness did this speak to me. Thank you so much. ♥

  • LLTwinsMama

    Wow! Can I tell you just how much that spoke to me this morning!? I am going through a similar thing with my daughter right now (who is 2-1/2). Thanks so much for this today! I will cherish those bedtime moments!

  • Jamie

    Just tonight, I had this exact “mommy stay with me” moment. I thought it would prolong her resistance to falling asleep if I did…I wish I would have stayed. I’ve heard your words spoken deep in my heart, but my head tried to tell me otherwise..”She needs to fall asleep independently…If I’m not here, she’ll just go to sleep…” Thanks for your words…they give me permission to follow my heart.

  • http://heatherhaupt.com/ Heather H

    Beautiful and so very true! I find this so much easier when I’m intentional to think back and imagine what I felt as a child…

  • Nate McCloskey

    Timely reminder for dads struggling with a toddler’s bedtime, too. Thanks for this. It is much appreciated.

  • Charity

    Thanks for this post. It has truly ministered to my heart at a time when I realize how many ways I have blown it as a mom. My sons are still young and this is a great reminder to make the most of the time I have with them as they grow up so quickly.

  • Gilda

    My husband and I put our 2 y.o. to bed which consists on laying in bed with him…we’ve been reconsidering this because we are tired and worn but we enjoy those 40 minutes in there with him so much, we don’t want to stop just yet (it will come a time when he will just go on his own). This post was so so so encouraging to read!!!!!! Thanks for sharing.

  • Annie

    Thank you for this! My two year old has been having a similar bedtime struggle. For the past week now I have had to lay next to her and rub her head or snuggle her in her rocking chair till she falls asleep The process has been taking up to 2 hours some nights! This is exhausting but In my heart I know that she just needs mamma and this is just a phase. Sometimes though, the thoughts start to creep in like, “am I spoiling her?” “am I creating bad sleeping habits ” “maybe I am just too much of a pushover” etc. but I truly feel in my heart that I am doing the right thing. I am so glad that I read this. I feel like it is God’s way of reminding me that I am doing exactly what I am supposed to in listening to my “mama instincts” and snuggling her to sleep and that everything will turn out ok. Thanks again.

  • Jasmine

    Touched my heart, friend. Thank you.

  • http://twitter.com/ireachhigh Ashley

    My oldest (a 3.5 yo daughter) reminds me of your Caroline. I consider her my ‘wild’ one and I struggle sometimes to meet her needs because I feel…. put off? By her seemingly natural personality, etc. It feels horrible to say, but it isn’t that I don’t love her! I just don’t always “get” her and it makes it hard to push through, like you say, and give just a little bit more. Thank you for this post, because I know I need to try harder and I will start telling her (and praying) that she is a delight. Not so that she will change to please me, but so that I can change to see her as a delight.

    • Emily

      I know what you mean – I have four kids, and at different times and stages of development, I feel like I don’t mesh with certain kids. Some relationships are just easier. I hope they never feel like it’s favoritism – I’m so in love with all four of them.

      • Guest

        Exactly! I have four also, two of whom are 2-year-old “identical” twins, but one is slightly more strong-willed and dramatic, the other slightly more laid-back and docile. I find it easier to ride out the moodiness of the latter, and I feel like I favor her. With my boys (8 and 6), my oldest is so…ME. It makes it easier to understand his moods and reasoning, so he and I are very close, while with my younger son, my dear, sweet, hilarious monkey-in-the-middle, it’s been a challenge since he was about 18 months old. He is full-tilt and gas-on ALL.THE.TIME, and he has always been the one who requires the most attention. I think when he asks me to “just lay with me” tonight as he does every night, I will say yes without hesitating…even though the house is a wreck and I need a minute to breathe. It’ll all still be there once his big brown eyes are closed. <3

  • Samantha

    I am struggling with the same thing with my 2.5 year old. I’ve not been handling it well, and I feel terrible for being frustrated with her. This really helps put things in perspective. With this insight, hopefully bedtime will be more enjoyable for both of us!

  • Emily

    I’m pretty sure you just drew that from MY personal experience. <3

  • http://www.facebook.com/jessica.meleah.1 Jessica Meleah

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I definitely needed this today after a rough night with my 2 1/2 year old son. I ended up crying in the bathroom last night, thinking what a terrible mother I am because all I wanted was sleep….and all he wanted was a little more of me. With another one on the way I sometimes wonder how I am going to do it; but they are little for such a short period of time and it goes by so fast. What’s a couple more nights of cuddling compared to all the nights I’ll have to myself when they’re gone?

  • http://twitter.com/LindseyMBell LindseyBell

    So wow…Sarah. This really hit me hard. I speed through bedtimes so often and can relate to this post so much. I don’t want to look back in five years and wish I had slowed down. Such a good reminder today. Thank you.

  • Bev Ritch

    Your post brought tears to my eyes. Your love for your litle one clearly shines and the tender moments are so very precious.

  • Vanessa

    Inspiring! Thank you i needed this. I’m a new stay at home mom, give me a report to prepare or something to create and I’m in my “happy place”, but now with the challenges of two kiddie (4 & 9mths) and each ones demands and developmental stages is hair raising, let alone juggling the rest of life’s little challenges (husband, friends, cooking, my mental stimulation =)……. any advice, routines, tips would be greatly appreciated. Thanks and God bless

  • http://www.facebook.com/crisbrulu Cris Freire

    Lindooo, Lindoo

  • http://ellasmom505.blogspot.com/ Sarah

    This is so beautiful and so, so true. I, too, have learned this the hard way…but so glad it did not take too long for me to realize my mistake. I think as we get to know our children better, we understand the difference between a child who is stalling bedtime and a child who just needs to feel that mother’s (or father’s) presence for a little while longer. And in all honesty, it ends up being maybe 10 more minutes of my time. And it is ALWAYS the most precious ten minutes of all. Those ten minutes where they are quiet and just want you to rub their head so they drift off to sleep easier. Or maybe they just need those extra snuggles to fall into a peaceful sleep. And honestly? It makes helps my heart and stress level to just slow down and hold them a little longer. Such beautiful words Sarah Mae.

  • http://upsiedaisymommy.blogspot.com/ Mary A

    I relate to this. Bedtime should be so precious and yet so many times I just really need them to stay in bed because I need a break! I remember one night rocking one tiny baby who just wouldn’t sleep. I had done everything I could think of and I was so tired and that very thought occurred to me-“Maybe she just needs me.” So I kept on rocking and it is now a precious memory. Thank you for the gentle kick in the pants;)

  • Donna

    Thank you so much for being honest. It is really hard and yes, a lot of nights and bedtime does not come fast enough but …… I also have been realising lately that time is going WAY too fast and they won’t stay little forever.
    Thank you for this reminder. You are amazing!!!

  • Janet Dubac

    Thank you for sharing your beautiful story. I am very guilty of rushing my kids to sleep and I have forgotten the feeling of how wonderful it is to be simply wanted and needed by your kids especially during bedtime. Thank you very much for this post.

  • Breana

    Wonderful post!! They are only little for such a small time and then it’s gone, we need to cherish every moment 🙂

  • http://www.facebook.com/cathyanneparker Cathy Bailey Parker

    Gosh I feel like an idiot. It never occured to me. Thanks so much for helping me see past my, “I’ve-got-to-get-away-or-I’m-gonna-lose-it” times.

  • http://www.facebook.com/molly.kuslikis Molly Kuslikis

    I had something similar when we drove my daughter to college in another state….she wanted us to stick around for a while . After we settled her in and walked around she turned to me and said, “you can go now mom.” Wow, I’ll never forget it.

  • Annette

    I needed this so much!!! Thank you!

    http://WWW.mynaptimeponderings.wordpress.com

  • Dee Dee

    I wrote a similar post about this topic a couple of months ago. My 2 year old basically sat me down and demanded her time. Just last week my 4 yr old was in a funk and he said he just wanted mommy time. I’m glad I took the time to spend with them in quiet reflection. Sometimes, we are moving so fast, we forget that they just want a little piece of us too.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kristie.cocking Kristie Cocking

    Oh Sarah Mae- I’m sitting here reading this with tears running down my face. When I read about your Caroline, I see many similarities to my Natalie. (She’s my seven year old strong-willed-wonder.) I needed this reminder that sometimes….many times… she still needs me….and it’s my job to be there for her. I need to tell her that she is a delight to me. I need to take a deep breath when I’m feeling frustrated with her, and give one more snuggle and one more kiss and let bedtime last just a little bit longer. Thanks for your wonderful words.

    • http://twitter.com/JeninCanada Jennifer

      Tears? Me too. I rush bedtime with my son every night because, now with his sister here (6 months old) I just want to relax, then go to bed myself as I’ll be up all night nursing her on and off. He needs me. He still needs me. He’ll probably always need me for various things, but he really needs me (and his daddy too) right now to be reminded that he’s a valued and much loved member of the family.

  • Jamie

    I could feel my heart rate dropping as I was reading this in the midst of a struggle to bed. A sick, teething toddler can drive out of me what he needs most–my love and patience and attention. Thank you for the reminder. I know lay with my sleeping boy and I’m not leaving- Even though I have to do dishes, wash pump and bottles, pack for week vacation, clean…etc…etc…I’m not leaving his side–not rushing him to unlatch. I will wait for him to let me go, because he needs me.

  • Grace Lawrence

    Thank you, Sarah, for your honesty and your heart to speak lovingly the truths you are learning as a mama. I can so relate to just about everything you write about and it’s been such a blessing to get to know you, albeit in a distant way through your books and blog. Too many times I have gotten angry when I should have snuggled closer, thinking that if I “spoiled” them with my affection somehow it would lead to dependence or other psychobabble – no more – I am going to work hard to cover them in my love and affection and to work to give my frustrations to God so they don’t end up being aimed at my sweet babes. I don’t want to live with regret, and they do grow up so fast…and mine are still only 3 1/2 and 16 months! Thank you. I am so thankful God brings mentor mom’s into our lives – I don’t have one here physically, but you and Sally are definitely becoming surrogates!

    • faith

      My husband and I have always laid with all our kids ….we heard the myths and all the criticism about the terrible habit we were creating. You know what my 15 son said Mom I need you last night …..I want to go to bed. I was texting trying to organize all our appointments for the following day….. Finally he said oh well……I guess I will just go……so quickly finishing BTW it was for him…….but I went to his room and said prayers and just let him have a couple minutes with just me. It is amazing to see…… that is all they want just to have you for a few minutes to themselves….they relax and sometimes you have the best talks and learn the most about them….more than any other time you spend. I almost missed it! It won’t be too much long to enjoy those few moments . So Moms Dads press on!

  • Heather

    I needed to read this. I don’t have a 2-year old yet, but I have an almost one year old, and yesterday was a tough day- thank you for reminding me what matters. I always want her to know that yes, she IS a delight.

  • brandi

    I missed alot those times the chances I ahd for selfish reasons. my son is 9 now and still wants me or my husband to lay with him a few min before bed my daughter does to. so we go to bed a lil earlier than some kids so each child has that special time.. they wont forget those quiet momments in bed with just a mom or dad

  • http://www.asimplehaven.com/ Jenn at A Simple Haven

    Love this. I’ve been thinking the same thing about my 2.5 year old lately. We had a really rough patch a few months ago and I was about to lose my mind. But, I was reminded of some of the truths in your post at the Dallas Mom Heart conference and since coming back and being more intentional to give her my full attention and meet her needs for time & affection, almost all of the drama is gone. They really do just need us. What a privilege (even if it doesn’t always feel like it! :))

  • http://www.facebook.com/candace.gunnell Candace Gunnell

    I am raising my great granddaughter…since she was months old…and now she is turning 5….I can’t even count how many backrubs and songs I have sung to her nuring nap time and bedtime…Now she realizes how tired I am at night and she will say…Grandma, you can sing some of the words and hum the rest…How precious our little ones are…

    • http://www.parentingintheloop.com Lorette Lavine

      Oh…me too. I love spending time with my granddaughter and night time is the best. They give us so much pleasure.

    • Tammy Watson

      I have 3 grandkids that come every Friday night! We all pile into one bed and we tickle and giggle and CRY LAUGHING over funny little things they say and do when I tell them stories. We then have to go through a list of about 5 songs until one crawls on top of me and the other are cuddled tightly next to me (I can’t breathe and they don’t know Im closterphobis(sp?) LOL). I WOULDN’T take all the money inthe world for these times!! Of course I am exhausted when they leave late the next day but as I tell my husband: I can rest when Im dead!! Meanwhile, I will cherish every moment spent making memories with my littles!!! <3 I wish I had been more about this with my son. I did all those same things but just not as patient! :/ Opportunities missed!!

      • Sara

        I wish my children had a grandmother like you! I did when I was little and those were some of my best memories. It’s unfortunate that my children won’t have those experiences with their one living grandmother. She is too busy for them, she tells us.

        • Rin

          Oh my gosh. That is just rotten! My heart just broke for them, and you! I’m 29, but would totally be their grandma! 🙂
          Ugh. Hope she has regret and turns her attitude around!!! *hugs*

        • Arlene

          My grandchildren live 1,000 miles away. I would love to have more time with them, to be able to “cuddle” them to sleep.

        • Jamie Tobin

          I also was raised with my grandmother as my mother when my mother left us with our father. She would let us snuggle on nights as needed and those r memories i remember. We have family close within 20 minutes from us but have chosen NOT to be part of our boys lives,it hurts bc I want them to have those memories. We are doing this on our own.

        • leffmama

          We have busy grandparents too, wow it hurts, mostly when you see them ‘busy’ with friends for entire days when they couldn’t possibly spare an hour or two to spend with the children. I feel for you x

      • canon

        What a neat grandma you are—and I’m going to remember your words one day when I am an exhausted granny “I can rest when I am dead”!!
        My small children are missing out on having any grandma’s–both passed away before they were born. So in a way I feel like I have to be a little more kinder and gentler and spoil them in little grandma ways to make up for the huge loss of not knowing how special it is to be loved by a grandma like you

    • cindy

      We too are raising our grandson… his mama… our daughter passed away last year. He is now 2 1/2…. I love rubbing his back & singing with him… I try hard to just slow down…. time goes fast

  • http://twitter.com/LRKnost_Author Parenting Author

    Perfection. <3

  • http://www.facebook.com/becky.sodon Becky Sodon

    Sometimes it takes an hour for my daughter to fall asleep next to me, and I want my time. I’ve finally come to the realization that, besides precious time with her (I don’t need to recreate the beautiful post.), it’s a relaxing, restful time for me–and sometimes I squeeze in an evening nap there. I also have quiet time to think and plan ideas. So, little by little, I’ve learned to realize it’s OK even if it takes an hour.

  • Tracey

    You know, I have an intense toddler that has needed me to sleep with her for the majority of naps and bedtime for most of her 17 1/2 months. The intensity of keeping up with her all day made this extra need so exhausting…until I surrendered, to the point of going to bed with her at 7 at night for several months. She really does just need me, and now we snuggle and I smell her sweet smell mixed with milk and sweat and toddlerhood….and I know how much I’ll miss it very, very soon. She’s learning to sleep by herself, and now I find myself uncomfortable and missing her because she doesn’t need me by her side for all of her sleep. 🙂 The irony. Good post.

  • Shirleyb

    Please don’t feel so guilty! There are many of us who have done the same…without realising….goes to show that you must be a fantastic Mum & that your beautiful daughter loves being with you! Thank you for writing this articlexx

  • LindsyGriffis

    Thank you for this reminder. I have one who will be two in less than 2 weeks and bedtime, oh bedtime. These days will pass too soon. I’m sure that there will always be things to look back at and wish we had done more of, but thank you for reminding me that this is not an emergency and to slow down.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kym.piez Kym Piez

    I’ve just seen this link through a friend who shared it on Facebook. Oh, how many times I’ve thought this. In fact last week was a very hard week with my three year old. It was a marathon of breakages and bad behaviour – the highlight was when he broke a shop ice cream counter. I was livid, embarrassed, and went to bed without even giving him a cuddle to see if he was okay. Bad mother of the year. It wasn’t until early in the morning that I realised, and just felt so awful. Motherhood is never ending, and I know we could all feel we could do so much better. Thanks for this post. So very timely for me. xxx

  • http://www.facebook.com/michelle.mills.oc Michelle Mills

    PLEASE continue to share thoughts like this. Though you will be misunderstood and criticized by some (kinda like the “hiring help” Amazon reviewers of Desperate), your readers need to hear *truth* and that’s what this is: authentic words from someone who has been there…

  • Michelle

    Thank you for reminding us of what is truly in our hearts. Our flesh is so tired from working all day, and all those never ending “mommy” duties that you only find to repeat itself the next day. I always want to be mindful of my children and hear their heartbeat and desires. Thanks again for sharing!

  • Donna

    <3 this, thank you, I needed to read this, my 17 month old is 'sleep challenged' I'm so embarrassed to say he sleeps with us and still wakes through the night to nurse, I do this bc I'm so sure he needs it, that sleep training just wont work for him. I'm a tired mama and I'm not always patient with him but deep down I know i'm doing the right thing!

  • Dr. Barbara Sorrels

    Beautiful post – In our culture the needs of parents often take
    precedence over the developmental needs of children, and there is an
    underlying fear that if we don’t show these babies who is “boss” in
    infancy we will raise out-of-control teenagers. We now have rocket
    science to dispel these myths, and it’s not hard to see the negative
    consequences around us. Keep trusting your “mom sense” in what is good
    for your children and keep on dancing with your little ones!!
    Blessings.

    • Mitch

      You know what!!!! I think discipline and common sense has been thrown, NO catapulted (I can’t spell that) OUT the window!!! Children have NOTHING today. They learn how to do nothing, think nothing, its all computers and done for them. Don”t get me wrong…I grew up where we had to put in type in) our own program, calculators were becoming extinct. But now they won’t even talk to each other!! Face to face contact is becoming extinct!

      • gramomster

        I couldn’t disagree more. My kids are in their 20s, and yes, they have and use computers. And they have jobs, and friends that the see for game nights frequently. My grandkids go to the park every day in nice weather (one is 9, th other 1), the nine year old plays computer games, AND has learned to do his laundry, reads well above grade level,.is completely responsible for cleaning his own room – as are all my nieces and nephew. When we were kids, the same decrying of youth was present. When our parents were kids, rock n roll was the death if society. Heck, the same things were said about Plato as were said about Ozzy!
        There have always been kids for whom everything has been done, everything provided. And there have always been kids who have been taught self-responsibility, and nit denied the technology of the day. And really, if we hope they will get the most out of their educations and their futures, they need to be proficient in computer use. Plain and simple.
        This also in no way precludes parents from being loving and engaged with their littles. So my son in law build computers with my grandson. They spend good, focused time together. And they still go hiking and fishing together too.

        • Italianmama

          Good for you for writing this! I feel nowadays everyone is critising TV or Computers and back in our day we did this we did that but who is to say it was any better. Parents were also stricter and in a lot of cases less emotionally involved with their kids. I have a 3 year old and a 6 year old. They are at nursery and school most of they day, in the afternoon when the weather is good we go to the park when we are not going swimming or to y daughter gymnastics class. I live in Italy where the summers are 3 and a half months long. They go to the sea for weeks on end and play in the sand and swim in the sea. They attend summer camp where they socialise and play with other kids. And you know what sometimes they like to watch tv, or play on my iPad when they are not home building a fort or doing art of making playdoh with me. Everything in reason! the same with everything. I have friends who deny their kids any TV or any computers or any sugar and I think that is more unhealthy than in moderation.

    • Jaime

      I strongly, emphatically, overwhelmingly disagree. If anything, the expectation that women put on themselves and others is to do everything possible to develop their children and meet their needs at the expense of their own needs. The mommy wars is alive and well with judgement on everything from breastfeeding v. formula feeding, meeting developmental milestones and what to feed your baby. I’ve never encountered advice about showing my infant “who’s boss.” Or perhaps this is information still given out to fundamental Christians. If so that would explain why it’s not been more prevalent in the information I’ve been given and books I’ve read.

      • Betsy

        Why do some people automatically vilify fundamental Christians? Talk about being judgmental. Giving up an extra 20 or 30 minutes an evening to ensure a child feels loved and safe has nothing to do with one certain faith and everything to do with accepting and embracing this miracle called motherhood. I didn’t get the “mommy wars” feeling in this article. My hope is that you, along with all the other mommies realize that we are in this together and that when advice is given it can be received or declined with grace.

        • Danielle Campbell

          Motherhood isn’t a miracle. It’s done daily all over the globe by half the population, and has been done totally on accident since the dawn of time. That does not a miracle make. That is simple biology in action. Motherhood is WORK, and hard work at that. Ignoring the reality that most of America’s work force is sleepwalking through life, and parents doubly so as they labor to do the work of 3 people at once is sticking your head firmly in the sand, or some other dark place. The author might genuinely feel regret and sincerely be trying to urge others to cherish living right in that moment, but she is *also* pretty obviously guilt tripping other moms. Writing a single sentence saying “oh, it’s okay if you’re tired occasionally” in a sea of “take care of the baby for those extra 30 minutes, even though you’ve been doing it all. dang. day, because one day they won’t need you, selfish” is *not* productive. The author is *obviously* not as exhausted as a lot of our less fortunate mothers, or she wouldn’t have the time to write a blog and keep her business running. full stop.As for me, I’m going to reserve my sympathy for the women who’re working 40-60 hours a week and then *still* getting by on 4-5 hours’ sleep a night because they have children….who, yeah, may not have time to spend an extra hour to cuddle their child to bed because they have to clean the mess the child made before they can finally get some sleep themselves. How about we idolize THAT, instead of someone privileged enough to write a blog while raising children, ‘kay? It is fine to write your memoirs, but when you move into pushing advice on others over how *they* should also do things, you cross the line. Unsolicited advice on parenting is often offensive. In summary, you do you. For everyone else, put on your oxygen mask first. Little johnny will survive just fine without your dropping of exhaustion to appease their ego. Remember, toddlers actually *do* think they are the center of the universe, and it actually is up to you to instill a conscience in them. As far as science goes, babies are basically born psychopaths, out of necessity. It is up to you to draw the line, out of necessity. You’re doing them no favors by sacrificing your own well being. They need to learn to self soothe, because mommy’s not going to be around 24/7 for all eternity. Why do you think animals will nurse their young, then get up and walk off? Because they, themselves, do not want to starve to death, and because those kittens/puppies/etc. will happily lay there and suck them dry. And what good would it do those babies if their mom just lay there and died? What good is an exhausted, lifeless mother to that toddler the next day when they’re up and rarin’ to go, and mom’s utterly exhausted from housework or lack of sleep? Honestly, this whole martyr fetish among mothers is both annoying and counter productive. If you teach them to be clingy and unable to survive on their own, it is not a lesson they, or anyone else, will thank you for later.

  • Sharon

    Love love love. I so wish I could get some of that time back from when my kids were toddlers. I wouldn’t have rushed bedtime so much either. I would have filled more of those needs. I can try to make up for it now, which I’m trying to do..(a tween and teen), but you keep on snuggling your kiddos when they’re young and don’t stop. <3

  • Jessica Powell

    Loved this, truly some days our kids just need us. I know I have been guilty of rushing my 9yr old son through bedtime so I can rush my 2yr old through bedtime so I can just “breathe” but this is such a good reminder to sometimes, when we can, just stop and relax and be there with and for our children. Even our big children need it <3

  • A Dad

    Dads, take note too. These moments are precious and mean so much to our little ones. Before long, they grow up and these opportunities of closeness and tenderness are gone. In the blink of an eye.

  • JeffandKatherine Wheeler

    how sweet… thanks.

  • Lelia Schott

    so beautifully written and completely true. <3

  • Deb

    Wonderful thoughts and advice. The saddest thing is to sit here and cry because you’d give anything if you could cuddle up with your little one again… but they are 28 and 22 and you will never get to again – you’re lucky if you even get to see them once in a while. I did a ton of bedtime reading, cuddling, talking – I never cared if they went to bed a little late.

  • Janice

    I do everything for my daughter and never had this problem o.0 shes my sweet beautiful two year old who yes will get on my nerves but no matter what we spend bedtime with snuggles and giggles till one of us falls asleep (normally its her but lately I’ve been sick and fall asleeep before her.. lol

  • Leslie Wiseman

    My husband is our church youth director and keeps very odd hours, so we do things however they need to be done to make “it” happen….whatever “it” is. I keep extra children in my home during the week and still have my free-spirited/spicy two year old girl with me and then after 3pm I get my exhausted kindergartner with his roller coaster of emotions saved up from the day. When bed time hits and I’m the lone man on deck I drop a crib mattress next to my daughter’s bed for my son to join us and we all snuggle while they fall asleep. They usually have their own unique bed time needs, but on these nights they seem to understand that compromise is in order and they each grab an arm as I sing them to sleep. It is a precious time, and sometimes I do fall asleep with them and lose the only free time I might get. My days are long and exhausting, but they are little for such a short time. Thanks for your sweet words.

  • Janice Holloway

    All my babies are grownup and even grandparents themselves, but I still remember the times I took the time to just be with my babies. Holding them close as they fell asleep, being there for them if they had a bad dream, just being with them, reading a book. Children may forget, but Mothers never do!!!

  • Liz

    My youngest son is 16 and the only one left at the house with us. He still snuggles with me on the couch sometimes. 🙂 He gave dad a hug and wouldn’t let go this morning. I love seeing him like that. I can’t wait for him to grow up and become a dad. He will be a very good dad. Just like his older brothers. 🙂

  • Patricia

    Thanks for reminding us what is important…

  • Andrea Hayworth

    This is why we got a twin bed for my 2 year old when we moved up from a crib. It’s soo much more comfortable than sitting up in the rocking chair at night. My two year old girl does the same thing (getting up as soon as we close the door) so I usually end up laying in bed with her until she falls asleep. Those snuggle times can be awesome! Sometimes she puts her arm around my neck and says “You’re my best friend!”. It just melts my heart!

  • Cathy L.

    I think as parents that love and cherish our children, this tugs at our heartstrings. It did mine. I often have wondered if I was the only parent that rushed that bedtime ritual at times so I could have time to myself. I have struggled with that guilt but then I remind myself there were many times I read a stack of bedtime stories….and listened to their stories….tickled their backs…..and sang to them…..songs that they still remember. Yes, we realize later (when they don’t need it any longer) what they needed then. My hope is I was there when they needed me the most and they know they have always been important and loved 🙂

  • deedlelee

    And grandparents can also help with the grandchildren if they live close enough and have the time and ability. My grandchildren are about 10 minutes away and I try to see them once or twice a week. I love being a Grandma!

  • sjjones

    I could have written this about my 2 yr old daughter and I don’t even know why it took me as long as it did to “GET” it. She isn’t even my first child, just the first that was “hard” or “hard to read”. Anyways, I read this with tears streaming because I have been there, I think I was there last week. BUT tonight I held her and my son and my baby and tomorrow I will do the same. Thank you for sharing.

  • Sallie Hart

    We obtained custody of our Granddaugthter when she was a little baby, Mom and Dad (Dad being our oldest) were in and out of her life for the first couple of years.mom didnt want to be a Mom and Dad was Caught up in Drugs.Our Granddaughter has been a Blessing in our lives beyond anything!! Her Mom hasnt had contact since she was 5 yrs old and Dad passed away when she was 6.She is now 12 and we still Cuddle and talk everynight before bed, sometimes it is irritating bcause i want my time, I want I want I want, I always stop and remember how fast childhood goes, and that we never know what tomorrow may bring so enjoy those special one on one moments they become far and few between, and sometimes they may not come back at all

  • Melissa Pugh

    Excellent, excellent, excellent! The time flies so quickly! Cherish, cherish, cherish! I have never known anyone to say “I am so sorry that I sang songs to you, read books to you, and snuggled with you when you were little!” However…

  • Shannon Pastore

    This sounds like you wrote it for me and my little crazy haired hippie! That is just what I call her and she has bedtime troubles too! Thanks for sharing! Great reminder not to freak out and just to enjoy her while she still says I need you!! 🙂

  • Amy Wigsmoen

    My 12 year old and 6 year old daughters still need me that way. I truly believe it allows them to be independent in many other way.

  • ariel

    I’m 20 and when I get off work or I’m on break the only person i call is my mommy I love talking to her or hugging her there is nothing better in the world than a mommy

  • marissa

    … in tears… i don’t know why i have never really realized it before.. but i have never been sung a lullaby… not that i can remember, my mom and dad weren’t that type…probably one of the most emotional realizations of my adulthood… wow. but so amazing, that i sing to my babies on their way to bed… nature vs. nurture… its in us… but we push it down, i know i do… i rush often through reading the book, skip pages because “she won’t know”…. definitely will be more conscious of the quality time before bedtime…. thank you 🙂 and thanks to my friend Jenna for sharing this with me 🙂

  • jen

    even as a aunt this is helpful i have my niece come over once in a while and i helped raised her so she knows if mommy can’t be there for her she always has auntie so when its just me and her getting ready for bed she knows she is more then welcome to come and cuddle with me while i singing to her and stroke her hair till she sleep sometimes all she wants is to do is cuddle with the puppy girl but most of the time she just needs that extra love and care before bed

  • Ella00

    Well, I co-slept with all my children so I was fortunate enough to get this all the time. : D

  • Amanda

    I really needed to read this right now. My two year old is exactly as you described and i almost always lay with her in her bed until shes had a chance to fully calm down or until my youngest cant wait any longer. Thank you for making me feel like im doing the right thing even though i feel so lost.

  • Sara

    Thank you for the reminder…

  • Amanda G

    This is RIGHT WHERE I’M AT with my 23 month old daughter. She has become a snuggle bug the last few months and got out of bed 18 times on night a few weeks ago. The discipline was breaking my heart since, after all, she would get up just to tell me, “Cuddle, Mama.” I hated ending the day on a bad note with me telling her to stay in her bed and her starting to cry. Again. Her baby sister is due in less than 2 months. Big changes are coming. I’ve changed up the bedtime routine, quit the discipline for her getting up and instead, cuddle longer before bed and give her an extra hug and kiss goodnight if she does get out of bed. And now, she might only get up once 🙂

  • Meghan

    Wow… I really needed to read this right now.

  • Michelle

    First off I should NOT have read this while at work! Secondly it made my heart hurt because my “little” girl is 11 now and in middle school. I know I can never get those precious toddler years back but, I can take full advantage of every day that’s ahead. Thank you for this reminder.

    • Debby Davis

      I say, “Do whatever it takes to get it back.” I am a grandmother. My oldest son and his soon to be seven year old daughter live with me. I say, “Do whatever it takes.” It is so needed for both of you. My sons are now thirty and thirty-five. It is truly a wake-up call, and can’t be ignored. You will reap great benefits if you just do it, Michelle!

  • MamaUndone

    Beautiful post. Agree wholly with what you’re saying.

    ~MamaUndone | Tiaras&Prozac

  • Cristina Marie O’Mahony

    What I can’t figure out is how to give my 3 year old the mommy time she needs while still handling the 1 year old who is screaming or needs to sleep or eat or has just fallen down. Again.

  • Grace

    Such an important message. Trust me, the wild child, the different, strong-willed one feels the distain and it stays there inside them, so take that important time to let them know you love them for who they are. If other children are involved it will help to keep their relationships good as well. Accept each child for who they each are and celebrate their individual qualities.

  • Danielle

    This is incredible!!!!!!!!! My 2-year-old gets out of bed 15-20 times per night and we struggle so much with enjoying our evening because of it. However, there are moments when I just give in and let her love me and it’s so amazing! Love this and it completely speaks to my heart! Thank you for sharing!

  • Judith Anne Collins

    This was a beautiful story and reminder. I am a grandma now and often give this time too. But I did this with all my own 4 little ones too and never regret it. They are all grown and have left home for their own lives and sometimes weeks go by without a call. Make time and push thru being tired to have those memories. One day it may be most of what gets you thru the days. I am lucky to do child care for a living so I do get lots of loves and cuddles. And 3 of them are my grandchildren. So I am glad to take the time once again. But often those distant memories are what get me through the times of no phone calls. So tired moms out there, continue paying it forward.

  • Sanyag

    My daughter is 13 years old waits for me to come up to her bed every night for just a few minutes to talk, tell her I love her, and tap her nose good night. When I am not home, she will call me. I cherish every time we do that, the 5 minutes in a crazy day that we can enjoy a few moments of peace, no matter how our day went or if we argued earlier or not.

  • Kdwthomas

    My daughter was diagnosed with Leukemia 2 weeks before her 2nd birthday. I used to be so thankful that she was an “easy” baby, as baby #2 and having a full time job on top of being a mommy, I was grateful I could just lay her down and she didn’t need soothing/rocking. We’re 3 months into chemo and she’s doing well, but I can promise you now that every night, I rock that sweet baby to sleep, whether she needs it or not, because I DO. Every single moment is so precious to me, that God has granted me time and I certainly won’t be wishing away one second of it because NOTHING is more important. All of it can wait people, ALL of it can wait. Sending love and grabbing gratitude always.

  • Erin B

    Thank you so much.

  • Sarah

    My parents were not the “lovey” types and so I have none of these feeling. In fact my one of my earliest memories around 3.5 was when w moved to a new house and I had my room (not with my sisters) and it was night and I was scared and I “knew” I was not to get out of bed and “get help.” And the pattern never changed. Having emotional needs was a no-no. How sad is that. Beautifully written. Thank you.

  • david

    yes im a single dad with a 2 and 3 year old this article is very helpful.

  • angie

    It was hard for me to read this because it brought back guilty memories of when I was a very young mother 22, with 2 kids 3 and 4. My little 3 year old girl was crying and wanted to come get in bed with me and I wouldn’t let her. This is one of my toughest memories because 1 year later God took her from me. It has been 33 years and this is the first time I have been able to talk about it. I went on to raise 3 boys and always tried to cuddle and spend time with them especially at night. Don’t let those moments get away because time flies by too fast.

  • tornadotess

    I am a mom who makes a lot of mistakes, but there is one I almost made that I thank my Heavenly Father and my husband that I didn’t make. We had been unable to have children for eight years and suddenly, we were blessed with a son! He was only a few days old and I was already so tired and I could get him to sleep, but the moment I tried to move him to his little bed beside ours he would wake up and fuss. This went on for hours. My husband came in and caught me crying and asked what was wrong. I said, “I can’t get him to sleep in his own bed!” My husband said, “So? Let him sleep where he is!” I said, “We don’t want him to sleep with us until he’s 12 do we?” and my husband said, “Why not?” I sat there in shocked silence, unable to think of one good reason why he couldn’t sleep with us as long as he wanted! The next day I started researching bed sharing and co-sleeping and learned that there ARE ways to do both safely! Let me tell you, my son is now six and he sleeps in his own bed, his little brother is now four and sleeps in his own bed and when their little brother is born in the next couple of weeks, he will share our bed until he is ready for his own. Obviously, they do sleep in their own bed eventually and obviously our love life hasn’t suffered since I am pregnant with #3! I look back and think of all the wonderful baby/toddler/kid snuggles I could have missed, all of the sleep I didn’t miss because I never had to get up in the middle of the night to fix a bottle, get the baby, feed the baby and put the baby back to sleep. I know there is a lot of controversy surrounding this subject, but I am SO glad that I was made aware of all of the choices available to me and had a loving spouse supporting me the whole way!

  • stephanie

    just make sure you dont make a habit of being in bed with her. because it does happen that the child will refuse to go to sleep unless u r there. it can turn into a bad habit.

  • heatherreid

    My 11 year old son held on a little longer than normal last night, when I tucked him in. I asked him if he was okay, and he told me that he “just needed me”. Great reminder, since I had read this blog yesterday! I’m thankful that I read your article before last night, because I stuck around until he told me that he was okay for me to go. Good stuff.

  • Matt Cherider

    I’m sixty-nine years old but now I understand why I’m thankful for my mommy and daddy because they did this for me all those years ago, and I followed the example. Praise the Lord.

  • amotherwhosbeenthere

    I never had the pleasure of raising my children. Their dad ripped them away, but I would always cuddle with them, sing, laugh, play whatever games, listen, then cry when they had to leave. I cherished every moment of those days. Now there grown and blame me for all the things that went wrong. But, I still love them all.

  • Dee

    Please enjoy these moments. I lost my little girl 5 years ago. I cry almost everyday at the loss of my sweet Alex. I am beyond thankful for the 10 years, 6 weeks, and 2 days I was able to be her mommy. I will be her mommy for all eternity but there are days my arms ache from missing her. She used to lay with me just “wanting to be with me”. Please cherish these moments. I pray for the safety, well being, and health of all children. But don’t skip these moments as you don’t know when you may not get any more of them.

  • Eli Madden

    Not just mamas, Dads too!

  • andrea

    I cosleep with my kids. My oldest is 4 and still sleeps with us. If I need a break, I get them to sleep in our bed. After they fall asleep, I get up and have time to myself. Only when they were little babies would they wake when doing this, needing me to come back. It’s been so wonderful. We get stressed out during the day. Laying with them and cuddling them while they are asleep (quiet and peaceful!) I can think about how much I love them and it motivates me to do better the next day if it’s been a bad one. My husband was opposed to cosleeping at first, but now he told me he misses them if he they aren’t there (sometimes we have different sleep schedules). It’s also gotten everyone more sleep. The kids do not fight bedtime- we just all go together. I nurse on demand and sleep while we do that. Since we started cosleeping, there have only been 2 nights (when sickness came about) where I had to wake my husband up to help with the kids at night. Before that I was an exhausted zombie and relied on his help nearly every night. Touch is a NEED. They need that closeness for the best development.

  • Sadie

    Thank you for this.

  • The explorer’s mum!

    This made me cry all the way through. There is nothing more special than stroking your child’s head and being there when they need you. My 3 year old said to me the other day, “Mummy,when you’re not with me I fall to pieces.” They are so precious – why is it that as adults, most of us rarely sleep alone and would never leave a friend to cry, yet we’re happy to do it to our children.

  • Saumya Dahake

    Sarah! Your article is the bestest tjingbthat could happen to me on a Friday morning while I am running arounc like a mad woman in this house! Stopping to send you a hug and just one word: Thank you! I needed this. :’)

  • missytwoshoes

    my friend just posted this on facebook… so I clicked it. Funny how that works… God is really good at signs. Sometimes we dont see them…and sometimes like this one, we do. I have a 3 year old and a 15 month old and my 3 year old tries my patience so much. She is exhausting, and by bedtime I’m just BEGGING her to stop asking for one more hug and one more kiss. I just feel like this couldn’t have come at a better time. Though, in the morning after daddy goes to work, she climbs in bed and cuddles with me till sissy wakes up or the alarm goes off, so she does get time with me. But, I will work on not rushing bedtime because I know how much I mean to her, and I do love her so.

  • Liah Vance

    Thank you for this. I have a very wild 6 year old son. He never stops moving. He never stops talking… but every night around 730 we start our bedtime routine. PJs, teeth, goodnights to sister, stories, turn on the nightlight, watch a cat video on Youtube (they work exceptionally well at chasing off the nightmares he used to have)…. and then he curls up in my arms and just relaxes. Sometimes he asks me to rub his back, sometimes he asks me to sing, sometimes he just wants me to hold him and not say a word. He breathes deeply and gets as close to me as possible until he falls asleep. My mother says he’s spoiled but to me it’s the one time of day when he needs me and I can give him exactly what he wants. It’s 15-20 minutes of each day that I give to my youngest child. I tried to break the habit. The crying and yelling, shuffling him back to bed 20 times, him needing to use the bathroom and then asking for water over and over… then it hit me… why? I have the time and how much longer is he going to need me this way. I will be so sad when it’s over… so, for now, I will enjoy it and store the memories of the sweet boy curled in my arms where he feels safest at the end of his long day.

    • Adrian Whitt

      This is very good. Be careful though. Talk with his school teacher and watch out for signs of separation anxiety. Kids need this, but not at the expense of their independence.

  • Tash

    Thank you <3

  • Amy Jones

    This is one of those things that I constantly struggle for balance in because it’s SO easy to feel guilty, and sad, and like I let everyone down. There are those times when I can lie down and cuddle and sing and whisper little stories back and forth. And there are times when I can’t. And the thing that I struggle to do is to give myself permission to do BOTH. Give myself permission to let go of the other things that need doing, and just BE with my children. AND to give myself permission to retreat, and rest, and let them struggle to learn the lesson of independence because Mommy just can’t right now. Will I wish that I had more of those sweet moments as my baby grows older? I have no doubt. I doubt I could get enough of those moments to make me feel like I had enough. But I’ve discovered that putting pressure on myself to always have more to give only destroys the energy that I do have. So balance is key for me.

    • http://www.likeawarmcupofcoffee.com Sarah Mae

      Wise words, friend. And true…and grace.

  • Angela Gates

    I needed this today as we had this EXACT scenario last night. After battling about bed time for what seemed like forever, both of us were exhausted and emotional, I just decided that enough was enough and that I was behaving in a way not suitable to raise my child, my precious, sweet, beautiful child. So we just laid together and had a good talk. My daughter is nearly 4 and as it turns out, she is quite perceptive and insightful. She told me that she was sad because daddy wasn’t home (he works 24 hour shifts) and she just wanted someone to snuggle with her and give her time and love. It hurt me to know that I hurt my baby girl’s feelings like I did, but I think I have come away from it as a better mommy.
    Thank you again for sharing this with us!

  • Maria Vidacovich Boué

    A beautiful reminder that brought tears to my eyes. So many nights I am exhausted and just can’t wait to get my little girl to sleep. This really struck a chord with me and I will be sure to not rush these moments. They are gone so fast!

  • Melissa

    OH MY how I needed to read this! Thanks for the reminder! I love my snuggle time and it always makes me smile but I am so busy and tired! I need this tattooed on my hand so I always remember!!!

  • Gina

    This couldn’t have come at a more perfect time! Thank you!

  • Jennifer

    I don’t usually comment but this time I will. One night I rushed out of my son’s room. After all, there was so much to do and it was already so late. I stopped halfway across the room with the overpowering impression that I needed to slow down and say a real good night. So I walked back to my son, put my hands on his cheeks and said, “Mommy loves you, Daniel. I’ll see you in the morning.” We spent a few unhurried moments together. Then, he smiled at me and peacefully closed his eyes. A few hours later, he died. Unexpectedly. Tragically. Today, a year later, although the pain in my heart is still incredibly excruciating, I am overwhelmingly grateful that God slowed me down enough to say, “Mommy loves you, Daniel. I’ll see you in the morning.”

  • Kristi Erck Strickland

    You have discovered the secret! They just want to BE with you! The fact that you are simply with them and being there with them, shows them that they are more important than the phone call, the TV, the book, the chore, etc. This will translate in their minds as “I must be worthy, important, etc.” Then it will be less likely they will self-invalidate and turn inward. This is the most vital lesson to learn as a parent that there is.

  • whadayakiddinme

    My second daughter did the same thing. She just could not stay in bed. We did a routine every night and she easily crawled into her bed for a nighttime story. After snuggles & kisses, she’d roll over, close her eyes and appear ready to fall asleep. Nope. Within a few minutes she’d come wondering into my bedroom. I always let her climb in bed with me and we’d talk about anything and nothing in particular. This was a regular nightime occurrence until she was nine. And I am so glad I let her get the extra of me that she needed.

  • Stacey Ogden

    Today on a walk my 2- (almost 3-) year-old kept saying, “Up, please.” I asked her if her legs hurt. No. If she was tired. No. If she twisted her ankle. No. Then I said, “You just want Mommy to hold you?” Yeah. “Did you miss Mommy while she was at work?” Yeah. Awwwww.

  • Shannon Stubbs

    Ugh, thanks for making me cry! I feel this way a lot. I lay her down to sleep and just can’t make myself leave. She is so sweet and perfect and incredibly amazing that I don’t want to walk away. A million times a day she says, I just need you. Those are the most wonderful words to hear, and sometimes, the most frustrating!

  • http://www.FarhanaDhalla.com Farhana Dhalla

    lovely. thank you for this reminder. it hit home for me.

  • Ryan

    I lay down with my son and rub his back and sing him songs. He’s three. That’s what makes me feel good, as a father. What makes me feel badly… he’s my third child, and I just didn’t get it with the older two. Can’t agree more with this posting.

  • Laura Long

    I am not a parent, but I am a toddler teacher and during nap time it can be a challenge to have toddlers go to sleep. I notice with some children just being by them and patting them or even laying your body next to them and rubbing their back can really help. It can be frustrating, but kids need love and affection!

  • http://www.tjlubrano.com/ TJ Lubrano

    I don’t have any kids yet, but this was truly beautiful. A good reminder for the future! ^_^

  • 5 teenagers in the house

    Beautiful story…remember your older kids need you too. Linger just a little while longer at bed time (with teenagers that time is hard to predict) and you will have the best conversations and bonding time with your older children. The good news is they still need their mamas no matter what age.

  • Jason

    Google search “Dr, Sears – attachment parenting” apply his approach to raising kids and you won’t feel bad anymore.

  • Ang

    This is a great post. And it’s nice to know that someone else has been there, and has felt the same way I have. Although, this is hard to remember when you’re actually IN it… when you have a 3 yr old that keeps yelling for you, or that pretends she has to pee 6 times before bed; meanwhile, you’re trying to put your 9mnth old to bed, and you’re by yourself, as Daddy is working the night shift. I love both my kids to the moon, but sometimes, when you’re beyond exhausted, posts like this are hard to keep in mind.

  • Staci

    I lay down for a few minutes even still with my 11-year-old son. We pray and talk and hug the teddy bears. We even race to see who can get into bed. Don’t know how much longer it will last… I did the same with both of his older sisters, and I’ve never, ever regretted making that time and enjoying that time with them! They grow up WAY too fast as it is. Five or ten minutes of my time at the end of the day is really not so much in comparison to eternity.

  • Tiffany

    Beautiful. <3

  • Jade

    I have a two year old boy and an eight month old boy…and you have no idea how much I needed this…thank you so much. It’s something I’ve been feeling in my bones and you’ve helped to make it more real for me…that I don’t need to feel like I’m being a bad mom if I lay with my boy or let him sleep with me. It just feels so wrong to deny this experience…for both of us. And our culture is snuffing it out…Thank you for helping me to not miss this fleeting and so special time…

  • Audra

    Awesome thanks for making me feel like crap for having a bedtime routine with my kids. Now you have made me feel like the worst mother ever. Cheers for that.

    • http://www.likeawarmcupofcoffee.com Sarah Mae

      Audra, I am so sorry. I was just sharing a story of what happened with me and how I was impacted. My intent is to never make moms feel terrible, so please forgive me if that’s how my words came off to you. I think we all just do the best we can with what we’ve got and who we are, and each family bedtime will look differently. Please don’t feel like a terrible mother; I bet you’re a wonderful, loving mother…in fact, just ignore this post altogether if it makes you question yourself and your mothering. Just keep lovin’ your babes and zap my words right out of your head.

  • luna456m

    Thank you!

  • Kim

    Man, this made me cry. I’ve got 4 little boys, and I’m like a drill sergeant when it comes to bedtime. All I want to do is get them into bed so I can finally hear…nothing. I hurry them along, sometimes forgetting to kiss them goodnight, because if I go fast enough, it won’t be such a huge hassle. Thank you so much for the reminder that they need our love and just a moment more of our time. 🙂

  • Mitch

    I have 2 children, almost 6 and 4. If they want to sleep in my bed, whatever….I will cherish every SECOND I have with them close to me. Smell their hair, feel their warmth and softness next to me. I have listened to people say, ‘Let them cry, or be consistent!” You know what’s consistent? Them wanting to be near you at this age. You know what’s not? Them wanting nothing to do with you when they hit 14!!!! Or earlier, these days! I will embrace every second of, “Mommy I wanna cuddle on the couch.” Because you know what, I know someday, “Mom, just leave me alone” is going to come.

  • Pamela

    This is so ironic that I saw this today – just came to this realization recently with my 20 month old and have since been enjoying our night time snuggles when she needs just that little bit more to be comforted to sleep. It is my favorite bedtime routine, now. Even when I am tired and want my alone time. I know that she needs me and I think deep down, I need her even more. Thanks for this article and reminding us mothers what is important on those days when we feel too exhausted!

  • Kelly Brittain

    What I would give to be there again. Night time was my favorite time even if I knew I had to do dishes and laundry and shower and clean only to fall in bed exhausted to only get 6 hours sleep if I was lucky. I was a single parent with young children. I worked almost 70 hours a week to provide for my boys. Hot, dirty, sweaty, hard factory work…only to come home and mow the yard, shower, cook dinner, start the laundry, feed the boys, give them their baths and by then it was their bedtime. My two little boys and I would lay there and talk about the day…just unwind together. Then we would read a book together…and I would then turn out their light and lay there and sing to them…or just rub their backs. When they were really little, I was a stay at home mom and I always rocked them to sleep or slow danced in the night with their head on my shoulder while soft beautiful music played in the darkness. That first year on our own was really rough on all of us, but once we had our routine, this is what we all looked forward to because it was the only time I really got to spend with them having so much responsibility to take care of everything. They are both grown young men now and my oldest is married and moved out 2 years ago. Once they started getting older…we kind of slowly stopped because of so many sleepovers (and it’s just not cool with the dudes when you’re older lol). They would still once in a while come in my room and flop across the end of the bed and just start talking. That’s usually how we had family meetings and it was wonderful. My boys had no hesitations at all to come to me and talk to me about anything!! I’m so glad we spent so much time talking and getting to know each other like we did. They are so wonderful and everyone thinks so. I’m so proud of what they’ve become. My oldest graduates in a week and a half as a middle school teacher. My youngest kind of fast forwarded through school and graduates in 5 months with deg in psychology. Both will be working with children in the school systems. I can close my eyes and still smell their just shampooed hair. They are so busy creating lives of their own now that we don’t have that time anymore together…and oh how I miss it! I miss them. So hold your babies tonight, tomorrow and every moment you can. Close your eyes and remember their smell, their laughter…their arms wrapped around you. For things will slow down one day…and they will surely leave the nest not long after and you will need every memory you can so you can sleep at night.

  • Sarah Molloy

    My children (now adults) are well past this stage now, but I remember being that tired, I just wanted them to sleep without needing my presence. It’s not until they no longer need you that you realise how valuable those moments are and how transitory this time is. It seems like forever at the time but before you know it the time has gone you won’t get that chance again. I think it’s this realisation that will make us brilliant grandparents (that and being able to sleep most of the week) I’m looking forward to grand children more than I ever imagined I would, I can’t wait to do all the things I was bored or tired of doing when mine were small, I forgot how much pleasure the simple things in could bring.

  • jennifer

    I am seriously struggling with my 5yr old. She will not go to bed. Its 10 right now. We used to read and snuggle and now she just wants to stay up like my older two but now they arent getting any of my time. It is making me feel angry. We have been doing this every night for 3 months and I new to peaceful parenting and im struggling with bedtime. Do I let her stay up?

  • Deirdre

    As a “middle child,” my first thought was: What about the other kids? You mentioned your oldest. Do you meet their needs, too?

  • Jennifer S.

    Thank you for this post. My 3 year old is going through a phase where he’s having a lot of trouble sleeping, and it is very exhausting and frustrating. Thank you for the reminder to be patient and act in love.

  • Sara U

    This is so true!! Still to this day (or night) both my girls who are 4 & 6 ask me every night to read them a bookie & stay with them the whole night & never go away. When my 4 yr old would ask that every night & I would say no I would see the sad look in her eyes so I decided to start saying yes every night (even though I wasn’t going to stay with her the whole night & never go away) & it would be a spark to her eyes & she would almost instantly fall asleep. And even though I would never stay the whole night & she knew that by morning time, she still asks me every night & I still continually to tell her yes. It comforts her and makes her feel loved. It makes her rest easy & that’s all that matters. I will be sad the day she stops asking me, so until then I will say never say no to her when she asks “Mommy, will you sleep with me the whole night & never go away”?

  • Malina Arp

    Thank you for this heart warming story! I totally agree with you – we need to fill our children with love, with god, and being close to them as much as they need to is the best way. The times I feel it´s difficult and I just want my break I see it as my spiritual practice just take a deep breath and go on singing and let the love fill you and your little one <3

    Love / Mia
    http://www.hippiechic.blogg.se

  • MADELEINE

    My name is Adrain Walcolt I live in United States. I am happily married with two kids and a beautiful wife but something terrible happened to my family along the line, I lost my job and my wife packed out of my house because I was unable to take care of her and my kids at that particular time. I manage all through for four years until I cannot cope with the situation again, so I searched on the internet for any help about getting back my family and job, i contacted heritagespelltemple@gmail.com and today i am very happy again

  • Dad of six

    No. She doesn’t NEED you, she WANTS you. You are skulking her beyond repair! You don’t let the child dictate ANY of the terms in the house. That is the parent’s job. You don’t allow the child to tell you when you can go!

    • Dad of six

      *spoiling* not skulking

    • Izza

      Wow. Buying her whatever she wants would spoil her. Letting her do whatever she wants, whenever she wants would spoil her. Spending some time with her because she wants cuddles at bedtime? That will just teach her that she’s loved and cared for.

  • BugsMama

    Your truth brought me to tears. My 2 year old boy just wants me to hold him. But with a 7 month old who constantly needs me, it’s so difficult to just pause and hold him although I would love to. Because one day, he’ll stop asking and I will wish that I had held him while I could. While he still wants me to and while he’s still small enough. Today was rough and I’m at the end of my patience. I feel I have nothing left to give today and it’s only 5 pm. Thank you again for your heart felt honesty. I pray you find new ways to capture those lost moments. God bless you mama.

  • Julie Hauhn

    Would it be okay to share this story with my MomsConnect group at church?

    • http://www.likeawarmcupofcoffee.com Sarah Mae

      Yes!

  • Dewee Sofee

    What a wonderful post. As a working parent I sometimes experienced the same thing with my little girl, many times scolding her thinking it was discplining when actually it’s bad parenting. This is one reminder that I’ll have to stamp in my head because she means the world to me and I want her to have the best childhood memories.

  • Dadoftwo

    Great article. A book well worth reading is ‘The Continuum Concept’. It looks at indigenous peoples living naturally in the forest, for example, to show that our childrens’ authentic phsycology is really no different wherever they live. Our society puts many distractions in front of our children and us. Keep it simple. Love them. Listen to them…

  • S Hogan

    Oh bedtime is the best time with our youngest…I break ALL the rules! Because, when I lay with him, it’s just me and him. No big brother or sister, no daddy, no pet birds, no “mommy needs a minute to finish this”….just me and him. I wish I would have done this with the older two (even though the oldest never slept…EVER), but I do not regret breaking bed time rules…not at all. Besides, he’s my last until grand kids come along – I want to savor all the littleness!!

  • Romana

    That’s cute and all but my twins never say “you can go now, mama.” They just want me to sit by their bed all night. I have to get up at 5 am next day to go to work and don’t have energy for this.

    • http://www.likeawarmcupofcoffee.com Sarah Mae

      I’m so sorry. 🙁 I know it’s so hard and exhausting. Hang in there…I’m saying a prayer for you right now.

    • http://www.andchloe.com/ chloe marty

      Don’t let something like this make you feel bad. Different things work for different families and just because this author found that this works for her and her child doesn’t make it wrong for you to do things a different way. I hope you find does work for you and your twins, even if it isn’t this! 🙂

  • Genevieve Fields
  • riley

    Very true, I’m a single dad. I have my kids every night, and sometimes I’m so worried about getting to bed early enough on work nights that I forget what’s really important. They’re only little once.

  • Stephanie Cavo

    Thank you for this well written reminder. You made my heart understand more of what my son wants and needs. I am guilty of everything you said and will try to be more open minded and understanding. I love my little guy and he is my world. again, thank you! Kisses to your kids and bless you all!

  • A dad

    Great stuff. And they won’t need their parents forever…

  • Sofia Larrañaga Garcia

    I needed this oh so much…my Ellie is my world but I’m new at this. She’s been crying, fighting sleep and being what I was calling a brat! Last night she literally cried herself to sleep! When I saw that, I couldn’t help but just pick her up and hold her. I felt so so guilty! I’m her mommy! My mom was always there for ME, why am I not giving her that and so much more?? I want her to always know she can count on me! 🙂

  • Amy Morrow

    Thank you. I have been having an internal struggle over whether to stay with my 4yo daughter after I’ve sung her her lullabies. She has always been happy to go to sleep on her own until a couple of months ago, but recently just seems to need me that bit more at bedtime. My gut feeling told me stay and that I would never regret giving her a little chunk of my ‘me time’. But I was wrestling with the idea that she was just ‘trying it on’. You have answered the question for me once and for all. My little girl will get cuddles and snuggles until she’s content. And I will let myself enjoy those precious moments instead of worrying about spoiling her. She needs me. Thank you again.

  • A fellow mommy

    OMG This post couldn’t be more true. My daughter is turning 2 in February and all she ever wants is my love and attention and being a busy mom sometimes its hard to just stop what your doing to just be with your child. I have come to realize that I dont want to be that parent who refuses their child love or attention because I was “too busy”. This post just made all the more sense to me. Thanks

  • Mom has needs too

    What about what mama needs? Sure the kids need her but maybe mama needs some rest and to take care of herself too. I don’t so much disagree with this post as I see how it could make women feel like their needs are secondary, their children need them and that’s it. If they don’t fulfill their children’s needs then they will feel guilty – either now or later. The guilt always looming over their heads every time they choose to do something that they need vs what their child needs. Where are the articles on ‘take care of yourself first and you will be able to take care of your children even better’. This whole emphasis on mothers giving up their all or else feeling like they are neglecting their children is harming.

    • Hannah

      Exactly.

  • Erin

    Needed this. My sweet two year old boy is begging for attention from me, especiallu since newborn brother came into the picture.

  • Christi Collins Huebner

    It is so hard as a mom not to rush through life but I do try to make an effort to focus on my little guy. He is growing up so fast and I know I will long for moments past so I try to be a sponge and suck up all that I can. While days can be frustrating, I know that he will not be little long and there is so much that you miss. He is everything to me and I try to be the best mom possible and be there for him whenever he just needs mommy. Life moves so fast. We need to slow it down occasionally and remember what is really important in life.

  • Renee Kinlaw

    Thank you for the gentle reminder. Sometimes we get so hurried that we forget the one thing most important~our children.

  • Jessica K

    Oh how I needed this tonight!! A single mom there is no one to share the load and bedtime/naptimes can be a real struggle and the days can be so long!!! Thank you so much for this!

  • Ciprian Nicole Stoica

    This has me in tears. I spend one hour Each night with our 2 year old in bed. I crave my me time which is just house chores. Forgive me baby 🙁

  • s walker

    Thank you for sharing this. Man, I could eaaily have written this word for word. Tonight was one of those rough nights when I was too tired and frustrated to stay until she fell off to sleep. Tonight I missed it.

  • Kimberly Osment

    so … I was NOT that mom… I HAD the time… and I sang special songs
    and now I am sick and abandoned and losing my thoughts and so afraid and wondering what I did to deserve this.
    the world calls my children “Godly”… but they’ve abandoned and abused me and sold out to evil and I would plead for one good samaritan to find me on the side of the road and care for me! I JUST NEED THEM!

  • amotherinthecity

    Reading this post on the couch next to my 2 years old daughter who refuses to sleep if I am not next to her…; thank you.

  • Bec

    This is so incredibly beautiful. And true.

  • Fischer Anita

    I always try to tell parents this about so-called terrible twos. They’re just seeing if you love them. My daughter only had two tantrums and both times I realized it was bc I wasn’t spending enough ime w her bc of work and college so I had to go the extra mile to make that happen.

  • Kimberly

    Yes! exactly so true! My sweet Lucille has settled down so much ever since I stopped fighting her and started looking to see what her needs are. She became a whole new girl. Thank you for this! It’s just the encouragement I needed today.

  • Emily Foote Lakie

    I love this. Do you mind if I share it?

    • http://www.likeawarmcupofcoffee.com Sarah Mae

      Feel free to share! Just link back here if you would? 🙂

  • Lorraine Jay Sanghani

    I have a nearly 20 month old son. As he breastfeeds, I tell him in sing song ‘ You are my son, you are my sunshine…’ and he always always smiles in delight even though I didn’t think he understood when I first sang to him. Before I read your post, I did wonder if I gave in too much. Other people seem to think so. Now I’m just glad I do give in (most of the time).

  • Mamasgirls1980

    I could not relate any more to this if I tried. Tears are rolling down my face. I even call my youngest the “wild one.” I don’t know you but I love you; I love you for writing all the words my heart needed to hear. So. Many. Feels.

  • Noël Simonson

    Just made me cry! Thank you.

  • Amy

    Thank you for affirming my choice to be with my little one at bedtime. I often feel criticized that he is not going down completely on his own still at 19 month. However, I truly love the cuddle time and believe he benefits from dad or me loving on him while he transitions into sleep for the night. he is only now in the last few days asking to go into his bed to fall asleep alone and I sure miss his heavy sleeping body in my lap. But I have no regrets. I know we have been there for him and I wouldn’t have done a thing differently.

  • Summer Lepore

    Thank you so much for this post! Lately I’ve become lost in survival mode and have honestly been pushing my kids away instead of holding them tighter. This is exactly what I needed to read!

  • Rosalind Mann

    Its not just little ones that need you to. My daughter is nearly 13 and has become needy at bedtime. She doesn’t get settled and into bed until really late, but then she wants her back massaged and her hair stroked. I have ranted and railed at her, but now I have realised she needs me just as much as she did when she was a toddler. And with all that her teenage years will bring, I shouldn’t be refusing her the opportunity to have some close quite time with me if she wants it now.

  • Kelli Gallagher

    thank you so much for this. it brought tears to my eyes. just thank you.

  • Beth

    I was a young mom and I, too, thought that my precious little boy was just not obeying our demands that he go to bed. He would cry so hard and reach out for me. I would send him back to bed with harsh words. When he died in a car accident before he was two…those moments…those moments I could have held him and loved on him at night, haunted me for years. God blessed me with four more children, I learned that each moment is precious…even at bedtime after a long day. Especially at bedtime after a long day. They just need you sometimes. Thank you for sharing your beautiful story.

  • Charlotte

    This is especially true of working moms who may only see their kids for two, maybe there hours on a weekday. As a teacher, I had many students complain that they missed their moms because they didn’t come home until 5 or 6, then rushed through dinner and bedtime. I called them “phone plan” moms – only available nights and weekends. The kids suffered, but the moms either did not notice or did not care. Moms need to really make the most of the time they have with their kids when outside forces are limiting it so much.

  • Sheila

    I have always rocked, nursed, cuddled my girls to sleep and yes it does mean that I end up doing laundry past midnight and other things as I don’t have any me time but that’s okay. The thing that bothers me the most is the pressure I feel from my friends and other mommy friends to “go out.” They think it’s ridiculous that I let my kids stay up later (8pm) and then spend loads of time rocking them to sleep. I just wish that people would understand how short lived these years are and to be getting extra cuddles fills my heart, especially if they have been naughty during the day!!

  • http://www.galsery.com Debbie Hupp

    Love.

  • James

    I cuddle my almost 3 yo to sleep twice a day.

  • HarmonyWreaths

    I’m so lucky that I have 4 of the most beautiful babies in the world!! I get to watch them while their parents are working, when their parents have a “date night.” or a wedding to go to. Snuggling, and giggling and cuddling time is the best time ever for me! I know how quickly they grow. I have two of my own……

  • steph

    My baby is 4.5yo and at night we have stories and she listens to some music. These she’ll sometimes forfeit for whatever reason, but every night she wants me to lay down with her for a few cuddles, and then her 3 kisses goodnight. I always tell her when I’ll be getting up and leaving – some nights she’s happy for me to go straight away, other nights she’ll pull my arm closer and negotiate for just that little bit longer. We’ll talk quietly and giggle, she’ll tell me stories about her toys, or show me something new she’s learnt how to do. It’s a special part of my day and I try to keep it as such and not get impatient.

  • Marion Downie

    Ýou cannot give a small child enough love, I used to sing all the nursery times Icould remember and then make up as many as I could, l would sing Lullabies. Cuddle them all don’-t leave them crying make up stories to tell them about a child with their name and some friends. You cannot cuddle a baby or child too much.

  • Weezy

    I never leave the bedroom until my 21 month old is fast asleep. Her cot is still in our room and she falls asleep next to me in our bed. I treasure this time together.

  • Guest

    I agree. I lie with my son every night sing and stroke his hair and we do a relaxation meditation together before he sleeps, after books and readers. It’s at this time that he tells me about his day and that I get to cuddle him. Sometimes I get sick of it because the whole process can take up to 1 hour but its worth it.

  • Nuria Campos

    Oh my God! I read your post and it has completely opened my eyes!!! What have I been thinking all this time?? I have a soon to be 3 year old (May), and we are expecting our second baby girl! We are thrilled, but I am especially tired of course just 20 weeks pregnant. We’ve been wanting a second baby since the little one was one, and we got one last year, but he’s waiting for us heaven. With this pregnancy, everything has been perfect thank God! So I have mixed feelings about the nausea, tiredness, the “zombieness” as I call it…it’s a good sign the baby is growing the way she should be, but it’s a not so great state to be in. Anyway…my little two year old wants to keep doing everything with “Mama”…playing on the floor, taking a shower, reading a book, eating dinner, making pancakes, going to bed…and I had just begged my husband to take charge with a couple of these things because I AM TIRED! He gladly helped, but we had Adriana running out of the shower naked because she wanted “Mama”, crying during bedtime because she wanted “Mama”, and just not being herself. Of course she loves “Dadda” when it’s time to play legos, play ball outside, walk the dog…but for other things…I guess that’s my job. I was starting to lose my patience when she wanted to read a book for the third time in a row, when she wanted to play longer in the shower, when she would want to sit next to me (on me) while we had dinner…because I AM TIRED. I then read your wonderful post and realized I was thinking about me, and me, and then me…and about how I felt, and then how I felt, and then how I felt. I really needed a refresher on why I’ve always dreamed about being a mom, of why we are dying to have this other baby with us, and on the great gift it is to be a mom! THANK YOU!!!

  • Sarah Johnson

    Whoa thanks for this SM! We have a 3 yo “spirited” child who can be perfect throughout the day (minus transitions which are so hard for him) and then bedtime was like, I just couldn’t. I was told to lock him in his room, let him cry, spank, and on and on and we tried all of it. Now, we’re getting 10+ hours of sleep at night with him on a mattress next to our bed. It’s not idea, and we’re moving in a month, so I hope to transition him back to his bed, but we just moved 5 months ago and 3 months before that moved again. I just know that he needs “me” near because so much change is affecting him and his environment. Thanks for making me feel like I’m not alone!

  • Karina Oleksiak

    Im currently dealing with my 2yo daughter who screams when I leave her in her toddler bed of a night but will not fall asleep even if I give her extra cuddles etc including staying in her room for a little while, as soon as I leave the room she screams. Tonight her father put her to bed, no trouble at all it broke my heart :’-( am I doing something wrong??

  • Tammy

    I have five children my little one is four and I sing to him and rub his back and or hair EVERY night…I have since he was born, I have four grown children also which will talk about how every night they miss me singing to them, it’s one of their fondest memories growing up …as much as they loved it, they don’t realize I loved it even more.
    Their only young once and they grow up so fast, cherish every moment 🙂

  • Becky

    Thank you for such a beautiful message. I’m now looking forward to my baby girl waking to hold her and simply tell her how much I love her. Sometimes we forget in our exhaustion simply how lucky we are. Simply, thank you xxx

  • Regina Bruce

    After being in relationship with my husband for nine years,he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to someone online and she suggested that I should rather contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that never believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I mailed the spell caster, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened, that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him, that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem and who is different from all the fake ones out there. Anybody could need the help of the spell caster, his email is (LAVENDERLOVESPELL@YAHOO.COM } tel.+2347053977842) you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or anything.

  • Jennifer

    Breastfeeding (no forced weaning) and co-sleeping fills all needs.

  • Jordan

    This hit me so hard tonight. Lying in bed way after my own bedtime, wrestling with the ideals I have of motherhood vs the wearying reality. I just can’t help feel a tinge of regret for all the moments I too have missed. Brushing aside cries for a little tenderness & snuggle time, with stern reprimands of ‘getting to bed’. These children, golly I love them! Thank you for this gentle wake up call. Xo

  • LeeAnn

    Your child needs you at 10 and 12 years old too. Learned that just recently. Thanks for the encouragement Sarah Mae.

  • Kerry

    I really needed this right now. Thank you!

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