I saw the telltale glow under his covers, so in the soft light of morning, I pulled up his quilt and climbed in. He shined the flashlight into my face as I asked him how he slept.

His brother dozed peacefully in the bed next to us, and I could hear the baby stirring in her crib across the hall.

It didn’t feel like magic, being snuggled up with my son and a flashlight at 7:02 am.

It felt normal.

It felt like…Did I start the dishwasher last night? What should we eat for breakfast? What errands do we need to run today? 

It felt like every morning for the last six years that I’ve been a mother.

They splash in the bath. The baby stands up and cautiously toddles over to grab a shampoo bottle. She plops down unceremoniously and concentrates on trying to get the lid open. Trenton, our oldest, suddenly turns on the water full force while Chase puts his hand over the faucet, redirecting the water to spray all over the room.

Sometimes I hide a laugh when this happens, sometimes I ignore it for a minute or two because at least they’re happy, and sometimes I tell them to cut it out.

It doesn’t feel like magic. It feels like water on my dry clothes.

But if I could watch it on a screen, I might see their bursting smiles instead of the mess.

She leans in when she’s eating.

When she’s in just the right mood, she leans deeply toward me with her head, while she sits in her high chair and I spoon her some yogurt. I lean my head in too, and we touch foreheads with sparkles in our eyes.

But it’s so quick and fleeting, and within seconds I’m standing to mop up a spill, or I’m bending down to pick up the half of her meal that she tossed onto the ground.

It doesn’t feel like magic. It feels like a tiny reward for loving them through the food throwing and the fit throwing and the I’m-going-to-throw-out-my-back-if-I-bend-down-one-more-time kind of days.

It feels like every day for the last six years that I’ve been a mother.

On recapturing the magic of motherhood. "It didn't feel like magic, being snuggled under the covers with my boy and a flashlight. It felt like every morning for the last six years that I've been a mother..."

But it’ll feel like magic someday. It will feel like a dream.

So why not try to capture the magic now? While I’m actually living it.


  • Beth
    July 17, 2014 at 6:45 am

    What a beautiful thought. Love this, Erica. I’m going to look for the magic today!

  • Ashley
    July 17, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    One of your best yet. Simply beautiful.
    This has been on my mind a lot lately, and one of the consequences of that is when I slow down, sometimes is does feel like magic right then. Sometimes.
    Love you!

  • Heather
    July 17, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Lovely post and a great reminder for us to appreciate the present.
    Heather recently posted..Opening and ShuttingMy Profile

  • Emily
    July 17, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    I love this post – such beautiful thoughts. Even though I don’t have kids yet, I need to remember to appreciate the stage of life I’m in, and the magical moments I have now.
    Emily recently posted..My Summer Bucket ListMy Profile

    • Erica Layne
      July 18, 2014 at 7:44 am

      Hi Emily! Great to hear from you, as always! Well said about finding the magical moments no matter what stage of life you’re in. Have a good weekend!

  • Jamie
    July 17, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    Beautiful thought! I smiles while reading it. It does all feel normal. I’ll start looking to capture the magic too. :)
    Jamie recently posted..5 Back to School TrendsMy Profile

    • Erica Layne
      July 18, 2014 at 7:43 am

      Thanks so much, Jamie! I admit I didn’t capture much magic yesterday, but I’m gonna try again today! You have a great weekend!

  • Tove Stakkestad
    July 18, 2014 at 10:21 am

    Oh I loved this… pinned it too. How true that it is a string of magical moments we are living as moms – we just need to stop and appreciate! Thanks for reminding me.
    Tove Stakkestad recently posted..Lullaby Earth Crib Mattress GiveawayMy Profile

  • Claire @ Lemon Jelly Cake
    July 18, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    I’ve been having more than my fair share of those moments these days. This morning we sat on the kitchen floor and just watched the blueberry pie baking and I lay down and bounced Micah on my belly. Wendy wanted to bounce too, so she climbed on behind Micah and the two of them combined were WAY too heavy, haha, and the wood floor was digging into my shoulders, but I bounced them anyway and their huge smiles were TOTALLY worth the discomfort. :) It was so magical to see them both smiling at me at the same time when it feels like more often they’re both screaming at the same time. ;)
    Claire @ Lemon Jelly Cake recently posted..Copycat Chick-Fil-A Chicken Nuggets & SauceMy Profile

  • Mary B
    July 19, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    I LOVE this! Thanks for the reminder to relish this stage of life.

  • POPSUGAR Select Blogger Buzz: Influencers Go Behind the Scenes at NYFW | POPFIX - Celebrity, Tech, Sports News
    February 20, 2015 at 7:32 am

    […] Why motherhood is truly magical – Let Why Lead […]

  • POPSUGAR Select Blogger Buzz: Influencers Go Behind the Scenes at NYFW | Skinny U
    February 20, 2015 at 7:32 am

    […] Why motherhood is truly magical – Let Why Lead […]

  • POPSUGAR Select Blogger Buzz: Influencers Go Behind the Scenes at NYFW | All Gossip News
    February 20, 2015 at 7:41 am

    […] — Grit by Brit How to get the Christian Louboutin manicure featured at NYFW — Pretty Connected Why motherhood is truly magical — Let Why Lead Check out this winter workout for that summer body! — Diary of a Fit Mommy The […]

  • POPSUGAR Select Blogger Buzz: Influencers Go Behind the Scenes at NYFW - The Fitness Wire
    February 20, 2015 at 11:06 am

    […] Why motherhood is truly magical — Let Why Lead […]

  • elizabeth
    April 30, 2015 at 9:35 am

    I love this!!! So sweet. And I love the photos too! I’m looking for the magic today in the middle of all the normal!
    elizabeth recently posted..Girls Birthday Gift GuideMy Profile

    • Erica Layne
      April 30, 2015 at 1:17 pm

      Thanks so much, Elizabeth! Me too, today. Hope you find it!

  • Anne
    April 30, 2015 at 4:11 pm

    You are so right!

  • The Benefit of Simple Living That No One Talks About
    February 24, 2016 at 8:48 am

    […] carving out the time and energy to explore nature or to simply climb under the covers with a cute five-year-old and a flashlight, I re-learn what it means live life fully […]

  • Kelly
    April 17, 2016 at 9:52 pm

    Definitely something i needed to read today. Thank you

  • Vinodha
    June 25, 2016 at 11:42 pm

    Loved reading this Erica.. The last two lines were an eye opener:)

  • Svetlana
    June 29, 2016 at 6:45 am

    Love It! I will try to look for the magic in my 7 year old and 10 year old. They grow up so fast not to. Today is a perfect day to start with My daughter’s 7th Birthday today.

  • Katherine
    June 29, 2016 at 10:35 am

    As a grandma I’ve realized how much I missed while my kids were growing up. So now I take the time to savor and enjoy those moments with my grandkids. I love the noise of play, the happy chatter and the silliness of it all. These moments are fleeting and pass so quickly. So relax and enjoy while you’re in this place and time with these treasures, you won’t regret it.

    • Erica Layne
      June 29, 2016 at 10:57 pm

      Thank you so much, Katherine! I’m doing my best to!