Navigating Daily Life

The Power of Ten Seconds

We are roughly seven weeks into the school year and I am sure my mornings are no different from any other parent when it comes to getting your kids out of bed. The first few days of school whisked in with an aura of newness where they popped out of bed at the crack dawn. The delight of seeing their old friends, making new friends and greeting teachers was met with anticipation. My Catherine was no different as she smiled with excitement to see her classmates that she simply calls “my friends.” 

After the first two weeks, mornings commence with a tug of war and small nudges to peel her away from the bed.  As I gently pull back her covers, she literally retreats to the bottom holding the sheet tightly to cover her head. When I crawl in to pull her out, the first word she utters with her eyes still shut is “HUG.” I reach to hug her, hoping that act will gracefully prompt her out of bed. It does not work. I give a small hug and promise a bigger hug as I pull her to the floor. This back and forth goes on for many mornings. About two weeks ago, I decided to just give the HUG. I held her tightly for 10 seconds – for effect – counting to myself “10 Mississippi, 9 Mississippi, 8 Mississippi,…all the way to 1 Mississippi”.

Let me pause right here to explain Catherine’s HUGS. Not to offend, it is not a polite hug given from the side.  It’s certainly not an atta-girl pat on the back.  It’s a full frontal body hug where you feel the weight of her whole being pressing into you and making you want to return the same love and affection. So each morning for the past two weeks, I greeted her with a huge hug and counting to ensure I would give enough love to get her moving. Let’s just say we now navigate smoothly through each morning.

Only something else started to happen in the last few days. I walk in to give a HUG and I no longer count to myself. I am actually focused on the moment and feel the fullness of her love. I find that I actually look forward to and need the HUG. With this experience, I found that I Have Unbelievable Gifts (HUG) I receive each day that yields huge returns.

This small gesture that once served to coax a little girl out of bed is now a gift that jump-starts my day. We all have ten second HUGS we overlook in our daily lives. Pause and adjust your posture to receive it with an open heart. You never know. It may change your perspective as it did for me and it only took ten seconds!

  1. Linda says:

    Oh I how would love one of her sweet hugs! You lead us all with your example of love and grace. Sending you a big HUG today!

  2. Denise says:

    Beautiful! Hugs are strong medicine.

  3. @Linda & @Denise Sending you both big hugs! Thanks for reading.

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