As I’ve said before, I’m a stay-at-home mom. It was a choice that I made willingly.

Being of an “advanced age” when we finally reproduced (I was 42, my husband 43), we were financially stable and could afford for me to give up my career and stay home with the child we’d waited so long to have.

Having spent several years as an elementary school teacher in the public school system, I was ready for a change. I don’t want to get into the details or politics of public education, but I will say this: teaching is hard. So. Very. Hard.

So hard that there are days where you truly question your sanity when you enter the classroom.

But there are also days that are wonderful. Days where everything clicks, where the kids just “get it,” and you feel that all of the hard work was finally worthwhile.

This is also true for parenting.

Some days are so awful that at the end of the day all you want to do is curl up in a fetal position with a bottle of wine and the covers pulled up to your eyeballs.

The sameness, the monotony, the isolation… all this can make you want to run screaming out the door.

And then there are the days that are wonderful.

Days that are so perfect you could cry. Days that make you want to bottle up that feeling of perfectness so you can open it up later on those other days and make all the bad things go away.

Yesterday was one of those days.

After her morning nap, I packed my daughter into our van for the 25-mile drive to the pediatrician. I really wanted to cancel this appointment because of the heavy rain, but for some reason felt that I shouldn’t. I spent most of the drive praying that we would arrive safely, and if we could get there on time, that would be a big plus, too. But safe. Safety was most important.

There were few people at the pediatrician’s office, which is unusual, even for a Wednesday. My daughter stood at the window, “oooooing” at the rain and watching the cars splash by. In the middle of such a storm, it was so peaceful seeing her enjoy herself like she was.

The rest of our day was mundane and routine: shopping at Costco, driving home, eating dinner. Nothing spectacular.

We looked at books and pretty dresses. We tasted the different treats being offered. We sang in the car. We snuggled before bedtime.

We kissed. We hugged. We laughed.

We enjoyed being together.

It was one of those rare, indescribable moments in time when my daughter and I were on the exact, same wavelength… like we just knew.

When we looked into each other’s eyes, something special passed between us.

And I so wish that I could bottle it up and save it forever.

Not because I anticipate more of those crazy, fetal-position-wine-screaming days.

But because I’m acutely aware that one day she’ll grow up and move away, and I’ll miss her so much that I’ll ache, even for the bad days.


In my wildest dreams, I never would have imagined that it could be like this.

I thank God everyday for my beautiful angel…

And one more perfect day.

Elizabeth is a professional genealogist and California native living in the Santa Barbara area. She has been researching her own family for almost three decades, and providing research services to others for about 8 years.

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