At the end of every day, you will always find me in the La-Z-Boy recliner. Aria is always snuggled into the nook on my left side…Luciana crawls to sit on my right side. I was scrolling through my phone when I saw a beautiful picture that literally made me tear up. It was a friend of mine…she was holding her 12-year-old daughter…the same way we hold our itty-bitty ones.
She was talking about a poem she read that says “a parent puts their child down and never picks them up (quite the same) ever again.” I knew exactly what poem she was talking about. I popped it up on my phone to re-read it.
Now we don’t know who wrote this poem, but grab the tissues. No seriously…you need tissues for this:
“From the moment you hold your baby in your arms,
you will never be the same.
You might long for the person you were before,
When you have freedom and time,
And nothing in particular to worry about.
You will know tiredness like you never knew it before,
And days will run into days that are exactly the same,
Full of feedings and burping,
Nappy changes and crying,
Whining and fighting,
Naps or a lack of naps,
It might seem like a never-ending cycle.
But don’t forget …
There is a last time for everything.
There will come a time when you will feed
your baby for the very last time.
They will fall asleep on you after a long day
And it will be the last time you ever hold your sleeping child.
One day you will carry them on your hip then set them down,
And never pick them up that way again.
You will scrub their hair in the bath one night
And from that day on they will want to bathe alone.
They will hold your hand to cross the road,
Then never reach for it again.
They will creep into your room at midnight for cuddles,
And it will be the last night you ever wake to this.
One afternoon you will sing “the wheels on the bus”
and do all the actions,
Then never sing them that song again.
They will kiss you goodbye at the school gate,
The next day they will ask to walk to the gate alone.
You will read a final bedtime story and wipe your last dirty face.
They will run to you with arms raised for the very last time.
The thing is, you won’t even know it’s the last time
Until there are no more times.
And even then, it will take you a while to realize.
So while you are living in these times,
remember there are only so many of them
and when they are gone, you will yearn for just one more day of them.
For one last time.”
Just pull my heart out and call it a day!!
The cliché saying: the days are long but the years are short is so darn true…and it hurts.
I looked over to the couch where my oldest daughter and son were sitting. Just a few years ago it was Gia who wanted to dress up like a Disney princess or curl up on the recliner with me. Now she is wearing mud masks and telling me she wants to change her look to “vintage.” Umm what? Nico was just building masterpieces out of the clunky builder blocks and now he has become a pro at coding. Again…um what?
I stared at them a little longer and wondered if they missed me picking them up in my arms. If they missed snuggling into the “nook” or me reading them a book while I played with their hair. I wondered if they missed the showtunes I would sing in a terrible key during a bubble bath or kissing their feet while they laid on the floor. Did they miss singing Itsy Bitsy Spider over and over again or playing hide-and-seek?
Will they ever know that every last is as emotional as every first for me?
So I decided to do something so they would remember that no matter what, I will always scoop them up in my arms. I will always be their safe place. They will always be my babies.
Maybe the books will change…but I will still read to you.
Maybe the songs will change…but I will still sing to you.
Maybe the things we talk about will change…but I always want to know what you have to say.
Maybe you think you’re too big to be lifted like my baby…but my baby you’ll always be.
So if Mom starts randomly crying — just humor me. I get a little emotional when I look at you four.
The days are OH SO LONG sometimes…but the years are far too short.