So, I've often heard talk of this 'mother's intuition'-the all-powerful natural ability to know what is best for your child. In the past, especially when the G baby was a newbie, I felt like when it came to the natural ability to know exactly what he needed and when, I was definitely not blessed with it. Truth be told, I don't know exactly what is best for my child. Am I disciplining right? Am I feeding him enough of the things he needs? Is he getting enough sleep? When it comes to the tough questions, I am ever-questing still for the answers. It's scary. I remember my mother-in-law telling me a bunch that she used to go to bed every night and pray to God that she didn't do anything that day to damage her children. At the time, I got what she was saying but thought that sounded a little over-kill. I didn't see how there was that much that I could do during the day that would affect the little sleeping bundle in my arms that much.
But now that Gabriel is older, I understand. Did I explain the difference between boys and girls (when he asked) in an appropriate way? Should I have put him in time out every single time today that he told me 'no!!' when I asked him to do something? Was it okay to let him out of time out before he served his whole two minutes to go potty because he said that he really really needed to pee? Did he see something on t.v. that he shouldn't have? Did I look too angry when he accidentally head-butted me in the lip while we were playing cars? Did I explain about accidents right? Did I explain why it's important to tell someone you're sorry if you say something mean in a way that makes sense?
You just don't really know, and they say you have to go with your gut. Well...what if that said gut is not really piping up and telling you what to decide?
But last night around 3:45 a.m., I realized that I do have Mother's intuition. As I quietly and gently pulled wet peepee pajamas and undies off of my sleeping almost-three-year-old and recovered him with a fresh blanket, I realized that for me, it's just an even more magical and inexplicable force than a gut feeling about what your child needs. It's waking up in the middle of the night and somehow knowing to check to see if the little guy that hasn't wet the bed in a week has wet it in the middle of the night for the first time (he usually only pees in the morning). It's waking up a minute before he does and realizing that you forgot to turn the baby monitor on. It's your body knowing when to taper off your nursing supply at just the right time because he's ready to stop nursing. It's picking him out of the crib and knowing immediately that he's sick. It's putting him down a couple days later with a smile because you know in the morning he'll be feeling better. It's not having all of the answers. But it's a special tie that you and your child share and share alone.