Cutting baby fingernails :: Little things can teach us a lot (Diary of a Baba)
Posted on March 5, 2018
Last month was one of those months… It was hectic on all levels and I saw it coming. From morning drop off, writing deadlines and meetings/rallies to crisis, more deadlines and bedtime routines, there were times I felt like a taskmaster just going through the motions. And honestly, 2018 is just going to get more intense. We are taught to “suck it up”, “lean in,” and my fav, “power through.” So how do we stay present in the eye of the storm?
This reminded me of a lesson from early parenting. As a new baba, life was kinda hectic. I tried on a lot of new things but nothing scared me more than cutting Collin’s tiny fingernails. The only time we could cut his nails was when he was asleep; when we didn’t cut his nails, he’d pull off his hand socks and claw up his little face up!!
So the first time I cut his nails, it was so slight like I barely did anything; then, the next time I cut his nails, I sucked it up, leaned in, and I told myself, “You got this!!” I was nervous but feeling good.
As I was about to go in, he moved a little and I ended up cutting too fast and deep into his pinky finger and he bled… all over the place. I still remember the shrieking noise.
My heart sunk.
I was so afraid that I had Mychi cut his nails. Then I remembered some of the best advice I got from an OG to not be afraid of my child. So I got some best practices (from Mychi) and one day decided to confront my worst fear and leaned in (again). But this time, I created a little space to ground myself in the present moment. I might still cut him (accidentally) and he could move at any moment and that’s okay. I kept coming back to the present moment, not what could happen or what I could have done better. After a while (and maybe a couple more cut fingers), I got it down.
Maybe being present is implied and assumed but it should not be taken for granted. Being present as much as possible can be our saving grace.
“Maybe being present is implied and assumed but it should not be taken for granted. Being present as much as possible can be our saving grace.”
This is not exactly the same as movement building or writing a proposal but little things like this can teach us a lot about ourselves. What if we could approach everything with such presence and purpose? That would deep. In the meantime, I’m just going to keep reminding myself of those fingernails when it feels too much like the daily grind.