More Valuable Than Quiet

Twenty minutes. That is what I need to feel the quiet, the calm pour over me like water.

I give them the rest of the day, at least most of it, to cut crusts off the bread and dilute the apple juice. To unwrap the Band Aids for invisible boo-boos. To rescue them from their perch on top of the playhouse, then to scold them for being up there in the first place.

I give them this willingly, lovingly.

But there are times like this morning when I feel a pull to write, a pull toward quiet. And all I can hear is the sound of my voice telling them No, and Why, and Again?

When an eight year old apologizes first before asking for milk I know I’ve given too much away.

I’m sorry Mom, but can I have a drink? I’ll get the cup so you don’t have to.

I pull him close, kiss his head.

I pour the milk in two glasses, sit with him at the kitchen table, and ask him to tell me his favorite joke, even though I’ve heard it already today. Even though there is quiet to be found behind a closed door upstairs.

Because the way he looks at me when he knows I’m giving him time is more valuable than quiet.

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  1. Wow, this really speaks to me. Love your “check yourself” tag. Perfect!

  2. As usual, you wrote a post that I needed to read…fantastic. Thanks for the reminder and I hope you get that moment at some point before you go to sleep tonight.

  3. This is such a wonderful post for the days of August when the summer camps have run out and school has not yet started. You hit it right on the head with this reminder for serenity and grace. Thanks for sharing. :)

  4. Awww, that made me get a lump in my throat. BEAUTIFUL :)

  5. January says:


  6. Marcia says:

    I love this. So true.

  7. Melissa Jane says:

    Oh well said. As much as we love them, we just need a little time to clear our heads.

  8. Becky says:

    Really good. Really. Gives me pause. That’s a good thing.

  9. Amber says:

    I so needed to read this today. I’ve definitely been torn between the desperate need for a quiet room to write and the guilt of little voices begging for attention.

    It’s a difficult balance to attain. As usual, you’re a breath of fresh air, ML.

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