A freshly poured cup of coffee; steaming out of my favorite mug. 'My mom is the best' is says. Then pours the splash of cream, a spoonful of sugar. My morning is just beginning, my coffee perfected. Then I hear the moan of a two yr old slowly turn into a whine over one of our two monitors. It doesn't take long before I hear grunting on the other before it turns into a hungry baby's cry. "I'm hungry, mom. I've been up reading for awhile." as I turn and see my oldest quietly lost in another world. My day has begun I think to myself. Sometimes I think I see a whip lashing my back as if to say "faster, faster!" I recall those first few seconds of wakening when there was silence, then the aroma of organic coffee, and the first step out of bed that was free to do as I pleased with no demands. It was brief, only mere seconds. But it was cherished. The two yr old's whine turns into a loud demand that makes me want to turn the monitor completely off "mom! I'm ready to get up now!" "Lauren, will you open her door and tell her she can get up now...." "But I'm so hungry!" "Now. Please. I'm feeding the baby." I hear the girls' door slowly open and listen for the next outbreak of voices. A few giggles at first, then an argument, and then actions that need my immediate attention. But I'm stuck. Nursing this baby. Everything I need to get going like, breakfast, etc is on hold. I have no choice but to pause & gaze at what's holding me down. There he is eating quietly with closed eyes. Perfect peace. He is content. And beautiful. There are times I am feeding him and his life flashes before my eyes...I see him grown. Those chubby, little fingers clenched tightly to my shirt as if it's his security. My moments of "having" to pause & look at him, take him in, are only for a period. Traces of grace. The grace to be able to stop & truly understand what it is I am holding. A miracle. Knitted in my womb and here he lies in my arms. I am mesmerized by his tiny, soft face. I have stopped time. I have paused it & was made to truly live that moment. The girls make their way to the baby's room & for a second I can't believe how tall my oldest is. The two yr old speaks "Good morning, mama. My awake now." and I blink my eyes & take a second look, my baby talks so grown up now. She can hold a conversation with Lauren as if they're a mere few months apart. My eyes are full of grace. I realize what God wants me to see. These are moments......and we have the choice to fully live them or go through the motions. I know I will be sitting there again in that uncomfortable rocker someday & Lauren will walk in and be ten. As I shake that thought, I wipe the baby's smacking lips and receive a huge grin. How I am thankful in that moment that his tiny demands make me find grace when otherwise I would not look. I lay him down & hug my girls and we go make breakfast. I know that through out the day I may lose sight of traces of grace---but I can rest assured I paused time that morning, even if only for a moment. But then again, aren't moments all we have?