So very fitting many of you thought my food baby (which, by the way, I named Charlie) was another little one brewing. But no, just delicious NYC food, three layers, and a wool sweater. But the same night I posted that, I was going through my old external hard drive and came across this photo from last summer.
Just last summer! And Sasa and I both let out a long "awwwww" and commented on her curly hair, pudgy cheeks, and tiny legs. It was only a year ago. I remember the day well...in the midst of a hard spell. We were outside doing watercolors on the outside table. Our one lonely chicken (Penelope) were running around us and eventually tried to paint with us. The little one ended up climbing on the table with the chicken, sporting her striped undies, and painted with Penelope by her side.
It's amazing how fast they grow. And it seems like such a cliché to say that. I mean, parents say it all the time, don't they? But it's true. And because we are so oblivious to it on a daily basis, when it finally catches up to us, we are overwhelmed with the information. Really? They grew another inch in a month?! You mean, instead of going to the toddler section to buy clothing, I'm in the big kid's section? No, it can't be!
It's one of those bittersweet things...marveling at their new accomplishments and milestones while packing away the clothes that no longer fit after a mere three months. You think, "how did my baby get so big?" But you are so proud of them. That pride is always there, but behind it is a slight sorrow that they will indeed keep on growing. It doesn't stop.
Someone recently asked me what my favorite age so far has been. I would love to have a 12 month old forever. I think that age is the greatest. And every age after that is amazing too. But I still miss those days. Everything is new and interesting and exciting. The love, the complete comfort and security, and the sweet dependence is all there too. But this new age of four, where they are embarking on a new course of independence, security in their self, and comfort in others and their environment is so very interesting and exciting in itself. Human beings are amazing creatures.
I continue to marvel at how much is gained in the first few years. How impressionable kids are at this age and how what happens now is what shapes their future self forever. They are amazing. Isn't this parenting adventure so very crazy wonderful?
While I am missing those chubby cheeks and teensy legs, I am still creating higher marks on the growth chart almost every other week. And she beams with pride with every new mark, while Mama grins and thinks to herself, "Just not too fast, okay sweet one?"
It's nice to be present for this crazy fast ride called childhood. I remind myself each and every day to be here, right now. No matter where else my head might want to be. Because I know that I will never get these moments back, because they go all too quickly.
Here's to all the little ones out there. May your childhood be filled with comfort, strength, joy, and security. xoxo.