First off let me clear up Chase is healthy and well before you read this post, but the drama is intended to make a point. Last night, I kissed my baby boy goodbye for good. I tucked him in for the very last time, as a 3-year-old. I kissed his forehead and had his little arms wrapped tightly around my neck for slightly longer than normal, as I was saying goodbye to my baby, forever. I don’t know when the last time he wore a nappy was, or when he no longer cried out for me in the night, all I know is he is not a baby anymore. He’s not even a toddler, I lost him without realising it, in fact, I don’t know if he ever was?
Chase has always had an air of someone who is worldly wise about him, that could be thanks to his days spent with grandad. The bond they had was so strong and lovely to witness, but that isn’t what this post is about, I’ll talk more about that another time.
I want to say sincerely, that my heart goes out to the ladies who aren’t fortunate enough to have their own children. Or the mothers whose motherhood has been cut cruelly short, I truly feel for you and my intention for this post is not to upset, but to bring awareness to the fact, that although your children are yours for life if you’re very lucky, they aren’t children for long at all.
The first year of parenthood is mostly spent half asleep, changing nappies, feeding and soothing your crying baby, sorry I dropped a TRUTH BOMB! Then just as the sleepless nights settle down, teething kicks in and you’re off again, snatching naps where you can like they’re going out of fashion. Then that year passes by and before you know it, the nappies have gone, they’ve started nursery and are making little friends and being cared for by total strangers. This seems like a huge exaggeration, I wish it was so. Of course, there are many beautiful moments along the way too and that is why I wanted to write this post, to make sure none of them are missed.
Today, my boy emerged from his bedroom just that, a little boy. The toddler has gone, the baby gone, never to be seen again. When I kissed him last night, I knew the change was happening and I’m pleased I was aware. I wanted to write this post to make you aware of how fast your children change and how each stage ends so quickly. When you picture being a parent you picture a life-time. Forever. If we looked at it from a new perspective, would we act differently?
Time broken down as a parent:
Baby - 1 year
Toddler - 2 years
Junior childhood - 5 years
Middle childhood - 4 years
Teenager – 5 years until adulthood at 18.
If we embraced these time blocks and made the most of each one, would we parent differently? I know I want to. I feel this even more strongly now because I am on my last child, so everything that happens is ‘the last time’. The last time I washed his bottles, the last time I changed his nappy, the last time I carried him. Of course, I welcomed some of the last times, as I wasn’t fond of the nappy changing, or indeed the bottle washing, but the last time I carried him, or held him in my arms – trust me it’s very hard now, he’s huge! – I honestly can’t remember. It slipped by without me knowing and one day will be the last time he holds my hand in the street, or says I love you mummy and calls me his princess, these things I will miss.
So now my little boy is 4, I am going to make the most of each time he cuddles me so tight it hurts, or when he’s pestering me to play with Play-Doh for the 44th time that day, or asking me to watch him play Mario, I will. Without thinking twice, I will treasure all these moments for the last time, whenever that may be…….