Two months old, he looks up at you
How his smile melts your heart
You want to say, “Stop, time”
Don’t move on
Even as you watch that look is gone
Then he’s two, such a little man
So alive and so smart
Again you say, “Stop, time”
Stay just this way
But the future comes and he can’t stay
Nobody warns you of this parent’s paradox
You want your kid to change and grow
But when he does, another child you’ve just begun to know
Birthdays fly – 7, 8, 9, 10
Every kid he becomes you clutch and say “Stop, time”
Hold this one fast
But it’s not supposed to last
And that time has come and passed
For he’s growing
And he has to go
— Big the Musical
This part: “another child you’ve just begun to know leaves forever”. Oh man. That’s brutal. And it’s one of the things that panics me as a mom. Am I committing to memory every detail, every expression, every mispronounced syllable? Am I smiling enough at the treasures I find in his pockets when I do laundry? Am I answering every “Mommy, why…?” with patience and appreciation for his (relentless!) curiosity?
I have no idea.
Did I do everything I could to get to know my feisty four year old? Because he’s gone forever. A fearless five year old has taken his place. And I have 525,600 minutes with him before a sassy six year old will wake up in that bunkbed across the hall. Here’s to loving every single one of those minutes with this boy.
Buddy, today is your day. Today, you’re five. You are my absolute favorite thing about this life and it just overwhelms me that you’ve already been walking, talking, and making a mess for five whole years. One day either your stubbornness or your giggle will bring world peace. I’m counting on it.
[typography font=”Copse” size=”24″ size_format=”px” color=”#8c0510″]A boy is truth with dirt on his face, beauty with a cut on his finger, and the hope of the future with a frog in his pocket.[/typography]