I hope you all had a very happy Christmas. Vitaliy and I spent the day at home in our pajamas celebrating Rose’s very first Christmas. My mom and Vitaliy’s sister joined us for the festivities. It was a glorious day! One that I spent mostly in bed.
You see, Christmas is also my birthday. And without verbalizing it myself, my husband knew what I
wanted needed most for my birthday…sleep. So, with nudging and encouragement from Vitaliy and my mom, and knowing Rose would be well taken care of by everyone, I made my way to the bedroom thinking “I’ll just lie down for 20 minutes and then come back out for the Christmas fun.” I woke up an hour and a half later and then spent at least another hour eating lunch in bed with my most coveted Christmas gift – Stephen King’s book On Writing. As I mentioned, it was all very glorious, a true Christmas miracle.
A lot of people told me, sleep when baby sleeps. Which I often did early on and now have to force myself to on days when I can tell I’m starting to run on empty. But the other valuable piece of mothering/parenting advice a friend gave me was that I get a year long grace period for EVERYTHING. A whole year to fall short! I cannot tell you the number of times this has come in handy when I started getting down on myself about something.
As I write this, I still have a stack of Christmas cards to send out, but hey, I’m still in my grace year! I have another two months to fall short, permission to live perfectly imperfect. We scaled down on the number of cards we sent this year and are intentionally writing a note with each one. It’s definitely taking longer than usual, but it’s been so wonderful to reflect how each recipient has touched our lives this year.
And that’s the beauty of living a perfectly imperfect life. One marked by grace instead of perfection. Perfection would have told me to send the cards out before Christmas without a note. It’s better to look like you’ve got your stuff together. Grace says, be late, but send them with love. My grace period ends on February 14 when Rose turns one, but I’m thinking this might just be a better way of living. Our new normal.