Monday, August 13, 2012

humming babies to sleep

As babies, our four children had their fussy moments. Don't they all? The roughest time of day for me was 5 - 7 p.m. which I called the "bewitching hours." A baby senses everything. She feels tension when mom is exhausted at day's end and when toddler siblings are hungry and cranky. Then dad walks in from work. I would say to Bill, "it hasn't been like this all day!" 

I thank my lucky stars (if I believed in luck) I had a husband who would change his clothes and willingly join the fray of managing the chaos. Call me June Cleaver, but I think a husband who works hard all day shouldn't be "dumped on" when he gets home. He should have a few minutes to breathe. Yes, YES, she's put in a long day, too. You needn't remind me of long days: I had 4 children in 6 years. I guess I'm saying that parenting little ones is incredibly demanding but so is supporting the family. And I am thankful I had a husband who seemed to know just the help I needed and did it willingly.     

Anyway, one of his most endearing skills began when David, our oldest, was an infant. When I was trying to get dinner ready or just couldn't console David, Bill would hold him to his chest and begin humming. It was actually a soft, low, one-note hum, as you might imagine a monk's chan.! It was like magic for our babies. More often than not, they'd relax and fall asleep.

He hasn't lost his touch. Yesterday, Bill held Lily and began to hum: "hummmmm, hummmmm." And, though she's not one to fall asleep on your shoulder, she soon dozed off. So very sweet.

Lily Jane - August 12, 2012

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