Yesterday a very kind friend offered to watch our two oldest children so the hubby and I could have some quality time together. It was going to be an after school play date that would last until 7PM.
That meant three glorious hours for us to share and stare into each others eyes and hold hands…oh wait, cut the romantic violins, this is real life. 😉 Real life meant enjoying going grocery shopping with one child in tow.
To some this may seem like such a waste of time, unless you are one of those poor souls who have tried to fit two fighting children in a shopping cart along with a baby carrier with a baby in it, a diaper bag, a honking huge “Mom purse” AND a few days worth of groceries in a heavy metal grocery cart with one wonky wheel.
I was full heartedly enjoying the freedom of only having to appease one crying child while roaming the grocery store isles, when a middle aged woman with greying hair and a neatly put together look, stopped to look at my sleeping baby.
She smiled sweetly and asked if he was my first. I smiled sweetly back and said “No, he actually has two older siblings.” In that instance as we both looked on, my son popped his eyes open and offered us one of those smiles that make the world a better place. Those tired eyed, gummy mouth smiles, with an added shy cock to his little head. We both grinned back at him and then met eyes again. We were both thinking the same thing.
It goes too fast.
I knew those would be her next words and sure enough, she said them next in a whisper, “Enjoy him while he is small honey, they do grow up so fast.” Her eyes held a million beautiful memories as she looked at my sons innocent gaze and I knew I would be just like this woman in twenty years or so.
I imagined her as an empty nester, who’s house is clean and fridge is organized, just like she wanted all of those years when her own children were small. She didn’t have to tell me though, that now all she would like is a little extra noise, a little crayon on the walls, and a little bit more love in her life. Like the good old days.
This little encounter got me thinking. I love when random people impact my day in such a deep way!!
I know more than ever I am trying to cherish all of these fleeting moments with my babies. At least once a week I look at my husband and declare –over the noise, and chaos of a specific moment– “THESE are the days we are going to miss!!!” We scoff at such a thought in the instant; when the babies are screaming and someone is hungry and we are trying to pour milk into a tiny sippy cup while opening mail, and emptying lunch bags, right before the in laws stop in for a quick impromptu visit to boot!!
It doesn’t feel like that when we are IN those moments. In those moments I just want to escape for five seconds and sip my coffee in silence (but ofcource, come out and be friendly when the inlaws arrive.)
But, the truth is…this time with them being little does go wayyyyy too fast.
This is my most important job, to raise these babies. I want to remember so much. I want to remember all the things that entitle me to be called “Mama”.
I came home and started writing all of the little things I want to remember about being a Mama. This list applies to me and it probably applies to you too; if you are a parent, or someone who has loved a child like your own, then you will relate to many of these things mentioned.
I could have gone on for days it seems, but today I capped my list at 50.
- You have left the house at least once with puke on your shoulder and have returned home with the same puke on your shoulder (and dripping down your back) and no one has said a word about it.
- You stand to eat.
- You paint your daughters nails twice as often as you paint your own.
- You also bathe half as often as your children.
- You rock back and forth when you are waiting in any line.
- You reheat your coffee all morning and end up drinking it cold because that laundry will not wait to be folded on its own
- You cry at those cute kitty cat commercials. the ones where they are all tangled in the toilet tissue, and for some reason all little animals now remind you of a little baby.
- You stay up late the night before your child’s birthday, every year, making sure everything is perfect for when their eyes pop open and take in the world — as another year older.
- You love chubby wrists as much as you love sparkly heels.
- You work out while holding a baby on your hip and another one on your shoulders
- You feel like a superhero when you read to your children while at the library or bookstore and other little ones sit close to enjoy the story as well.
- You clean pee off of bathroom walls and ceilings without rubber gloves and don’t mind.
- You hug strangers too eagerly at times, because that is what you are use to doing.
- You know the line up on the kids television station but don’t know what is happening on your favourite soap opera anymore.
- You have mastered swaddling a squirmy infant.
- You can sing along with The Backyardigans and Justin Bieber….word for word.
- You rock back and forth when you aren’t holding a baby.
- You bend over to pick up little shoes and socks a hundred times a day.
- You feel the need to tell your birth story to every woman with a baby bump – even if she looks terrified.
- You read the same book over and over again and don’t mind since it means you get to snuggle.
- You have woken up in the middle of the night to feel the warm breath of a baby –just to be sure.
- You don’t mind projectile vomiting, gushing noses and soggy diapers anymore.
- You have an opinion on the exact order solids should be introduced into a babies diet.
- You think your baby is a genius in some way or another
- You know the different cries that babies make and run when they make “the one”.
- You cant help but reach out and touch a new babies soft skin…even if it is not yours.
- You at one point or another preferred higher waisted pants instead of the low rise you use to covet – simply because you can tuck in your extra stomach skin.
- You spent 95% of the time you were pregnant worrying about labour and only 5% worrying about what you would do with a baby.
- You swore you wouldn’t appease your children with food or television, and now you offer both – at the same time.
- You cant sleep without saying goodnight, hugging and kissing your little sweetie.
- You can whip on a diaper while making dinner, doing laundry and wrangling the dog.
- You feel like your heart is walking outside of your body in the form of your sweet babe.
- You kiss imaginary “Owies” on baby dolls knees and offer pretend medicine in return.
- You cant get through Robert Munch’s book “Ill love you forever, Ill like you for always” without weeping uncontrollably into your sleeve and swearing you just have allergies.
- You adore folding itty bitty newborn clothing’s.
- You rock back and forth while out with your girlfriends –and swear it is because you just want to dance. 😉
- You sneak love notes into pockets and lunch bags
- You get giddy like a child on Christmas morning and cant wait to see the wonder and amazement in your child’s eyes.
- You cant stand seeing a baby without a hat on a cool day.
- You can carry on a conversation for hours with another mother, regardless of sharing any personal similarities.
- You guess what would be more important to accomplish when you sleep in: brushed teeth or brushed hair?
- You have spent a sleepless night washing soiled sheets and comforting a sick child.
- You tie shoes and do up jackets, pull on pants and tuck in shirts.
- You talk in a low and terrifying tone, one inch from your child’s face, when your children are misbehaving in public
- You have said at least once, “I’m just going to close my eyes for a second” and have napped on the couch for an hour.
- You have lost something very important in the bottom of your diaper bag but are afraid to reach down to its depths in case you find that piece of fruit you packed for yourself when you promised you were going to start eating better – two months ago.
- You use to clean your car once a week, now you don’t just in case the kids get hungry and they need to eat those spilt fishy crackers off of the seats and floors.
- You try to memorize a beautiful moment more often then not.
- You could smell baby soaps and powders all day while reliving memories.
- Your love multiplies, grows stronger, reaches deeper, stretches miles, and no matter what, cannot be broken.
I am sure I could add to this list, and I am sure you could too!!
Feel free to add anything that makes a child love you, or you love them, in the comments below. I would love to hear from your heart too.
Remember mamas, parents and the like, we are going to be the ones saying “It goes too fast….” and wishing for a second chance to love more and play more. Now is the time to slow things down. 🙂
Happy Saturday to you my friends!
If you read this far down, I am sending you a virtual high five right now!! (That means YOU Mom!!)
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