Somehow I didn’t notice. Looking back, it was obvious. I just didn’t see it. Or maybe I couldn’t see it. She transformed in a single summer. From baby cheeks to French braids. Needing help to do everything, now saying “I can do it myself!” No more crib, no more long cuddles in the morning. She’d rather sing me a song or tell me everything we should do today.
In 3 months time my little girl grew up. Her feet went up 3 sizes.😮 Her vocabulary tripled in size too. From here on out, she can tell me what she wants with words. She can feed herself, pick up her toys and fend off her brothers no problem. She lets me do her hair 90% of the time and ALWAYS wants to be outside.
My gut reaction is to cry- to mourn a season that’s past. To lock myself in a room with the last 2 years-worth of photos and sob like the baby I used to have. Why does time fly by? I should have known, being that this is my third baby to grow up. It snuck by me like my 5-year old going into the kitchen for a late night snack. Seriously how does he do it??!?
Back Into Joy
When I was a young(er) mom and had one little guy, a mom of 5 who’s babies were all out of the house told me the best piece of advice. To this day I use it and those simple words take me out of my sadness and pull me back into joy.
We were talking about how fast time goes. She was remembering when one of her kids was my little one’s age and I had asked her what her favorite stage was. She responded, “I don’t have a favorite stage. I choose to enjoy every new stage because it’s the child I’m in love with, not the stage.”
Light bulb.💡Why mourn a season past when you get to enjoy something new with the one you love. It’s not easy, but it’s important. I choose to enjoy every stage and every new aspect of my children’s personalities. Do I always get it right? Nope. There are days when all I think about is what’s next or what’s behind me instead of what’s in front of me.
At the ages 9, 5 and 2 I have a lot of “present” to focus on. So I choose to give them my attention, even though I wish my 2 year-old was still a snuggler when she’s obviously a “let’s go here, then here and then over here” kinda gal right now. The 5 year-old certainly won’t allow me to help him pick out his clothes anymore, but he does love to make forts and invites me to hide in them from time to time. Josh, the nine year-old isn’t so keen on reading chapter books together like we used to, but he wants to ride bikes with me daily. Every stage is the best, because your kids are in it.
What are your kids into right now? Do you ever miss stages that have past?