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The quiet moments we keep

This is one of my favorite things to do every day:

It's my job in the morning to take care of Jolie before I go to work - I need to change her diaper, give her a bottle, and then move her from our bed to her crib. (She sleeps the night in our bed because sometimes she'll wake up in the middle of the night and get scared if she's all alone in her crib and we're both asleep, but if she's in our bed, she'll see us and go back to sleep. But in the mornings, if she's still in our bed, she'll wake up really early and try to climb all over her dad and wake HIM up, whereas she will sleep another few hours in her crib by herself, and not be scared since there's some daylight.)

Jolie's usually pretty conked out when I change her diaper and even when she's taking her bottle, but as soon as I pick her up and bring her back to her crib, all hell breaks loose, and she will cry and cry because she does not want to be left alone. (It's usually still dark out when I do this, so I imagine that she's scared as well as irritable about being disturbed.) I can't stand the sound of her crying after I put her in her crib, in the sense that it breaks my heart - she sounds SO sad, SO lonely, and I feel so guilty knowing that I've made her cry and then I'm leaving for the day. (I know, I'm such a sucker.)

Lately I've started doing what I used to do when she was itty bitty - instead of putting her straight into her crib, I'll sit with her a little bit in our rocking chair until she calms back down again and falls asleep. (Yes, I've taken to setting my alarm clock half an hour earlier so that I can do this and still have time to get ready.) Even now, it still soothes her, and there's nothing better than feeling her weight on my chest and shoulder and smelling her sweet baby skin early in the morning. And listening to the sound of her breathing. It's a really beautiful way to start my day, because it soothes me too - instead of feeling anxious and guilty at the sound of her crying, I too am taking a few minutes to experience the stillness of the morning. There's nothing better than starting my day holding my baby.