I was standing in the hallway trying to drag a load of laundry to my little landing spot right in front of my laundry closet. A little boy with curly blonde hair toddled behind me pulling on my pants leg. Another little boy stopped me in the hallway, “Mama, hold me,” he said as he reached his little arms up to me. His big hazel eyes looked into mine expectantly.
For a moment, I sighed. I thought, “I just have to get a load in the wash…,” but then I realized it had been too long since I picked him up and just held him. Babies grow up so fast, don’t they?
He’s small for one of my children. Only 30 pounds at 3 years old. He’s easy to carry. I hoisted him up over my baby bump and he wrapped his little arms around my neck and placed his head on my shoulder. His younger brother was still pulling on my pants leg, and my two older children were looking at me from down the hall.
That’s when it dawned on me. I can’t remember the last time I was able to pick either one of my oldest kids up this way.
My kids are always glued to my hip. When I brought my daughter home from the hospital she would nurse constantly, while my oldest sat right beside me in the recliner. Then, I brought home my third baby. My husband deployed and my lap was now too full to hold all three of my kids all the time. My daughter stayed glued to my hip, while my oldest got a little more independent each day. I didn’t even realize what was happening, but he was growing up quickly.
When my fourth baby was born, the same thing happened to my daughter. Now, I often have my two youngest boys in my lap. My belly has grown big from our beautiful surprise, and I know once she’s born the little boy who still needs me to hold him will be pushed toward growing up a little bit faster.
It’s the way of life.
Try as I might I cannot remember the last time I was able to pick up my oldest son or oldest daughter. They are now too heavy for me to even contemplate it.
As busy as I am, I sometimes have to mentally remind myself to hug them, to hold them, to sit next to them. I homeschool, so I do have a lot of time with them I wouldn’t have if I didn’t homeschool, but I still feel sometimes I am too busy.
Slow down, mama, they grow up fast. When life starts whirring by you, they grow up even faster.
I thought this poem was appropriate.