I guess I’m feeling a little nostalgic and wistful today because my baby will be 8 years old in three and a half very short months. I think about how she is growing into quite the compassionate, kind, caring, sweet young lady I hoped she would, and I can’t help but think…what they said is true. These moments really are fleeting. They do grow up too fast. Blink and she’ll be starting junior high. Blink again and she’s in high school and getting her driver’s license. Blink yet again and she’s graduated, probably going off to college. Blink again and she’s engaged, married and raising sweet babies of her own. I need to bottle up all the moments I have with her now. Write them all down so I can remember them when I’m old and gray and she’s all grown up.
Moments like how she still holds my hand when I take her to school and pick her up, and doesn’t let go when her friends come into sight. Moments like this morning when I was feeling awful from a stress headache which made me lay awake from 6 am and how she hugged me tight to comfort me. Moments where she comes up to me when I’m working in the kitchen and wraps her thin little arms around my waist for an impromptu hug. Moments where she won’t go to sleep unless we’ve had some extra snuggles. Moments where we sit side by side on the couch while I read her bedtime stories and she leans her head against my side. Moments where we lie side by side on my bed at bedtime and I sing to her while she strokes my cheek, because I have done that for her since she was a baby, and she instinctively wants to make me feel loved. Moments where she decides it’s time to play a board game or colour and pulls me into her world.
How many nights of singing bedtime songs and reading her stories do I have left? How many moments where she reaches for my hand or crawls into my lap? How soon before she doesn’t want to spend as much time with me because she’s busy with her friends? How will I handle the day she no longer reaches for my hand, but a boyfriend’s instead? Or snuggles with me get replaced with snuggles with her husband? How long before she decides she’s too grown up for Girls’ Night and Thursday night cartoons?
Yes, these moments are fleeting. And because they are, I don’t want to let them go from my memory. I want to pick up each moment, put it in a jar to pull out on the nights when she’s across the country with friends or wherever she may be that’s night right by my side. I want to remember all the meals we’ve had where I get to just sit and look into her beautiful brown eyes and wonder how I got so blessed. I want to remember her walking in circles around the kitchen while she spells words for her test at the end of the week. I want to remember the softness of her red hair with all its fascinating highlights that I have the pleasure of brushing and putting up into a ponytail or braid each morning.
I want to cherish all these precious moments while she is small. Right now I’m her mommy and best friend all rolled into one. Someday I may just be her mom that frustrates her with ‘too many rules’. But I hope that, if still world and my life last long enough, that some day we can be best friends again. I want to remember all the Halloween costumes she has had over the years. Her first day of school. The day she started swimming lessons for the first time and discovered just how much she loves to swim. I want to remember how her favourite colour transitioned from purple to pink to turquoise. I want to remember how she draws the most incredible pictures and the image of her on her bedroom floor or on the couch, surrounded by books and reading them like she can’t get enough.
I want to remember everything but I know my human brain won’t. So, I write it down. I take pictures and videos and store them for the future. I can’t hold onto these fleeting moments, but I can cherish them and be grateful for each and every one. These moments are fleeting indeed but I’m only a little sad to see them go, because I am so proud of the young lady my daughter is becoming.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have an almost 8 year old munchkin to snuggle.
Until next time,
Keep dreaming and never give up.