Tuesday, May 7, 2013

I Don't Want to Rush Things. But I Do. And I Don't.

Some things. Having a baby is a wonderful, exhausting, glorious experience that I wouldn't want to trade for anything in the world. In fact, I love having a baby - especially a six-month-old baby who I can send into spasms of joy with nothing more than my very own kissy face or a gentle tickle on the chin. Bo is a delight, as babies go. Capable of charming not only me, but my various clients and random strangers whose eyes he loves to catch with his own bright, sparkling orbs.

Seriously sparkling. So much that poor P. came to me despondent because, as she said, she "wished she had sparkles in her eyes like Bo has."

I also have wishes. I want to slow down time so that Bo's first two years feel as lengthy and as glorious as P.'s, which will never happen because in those years I was doing everything for the first time. I'd changed diapers but I'd never mothered before. I want to slow down P.'s next two years so I never have to live in a world where she'll say no to one more nighttime cuddle or another game, but I know that's silly since watching your babies turn into grown up people is kind of the point.

My darlings. They will be both be living their own lives in what for me will feel like moments, leaving me wondering how my own timeline could have lagged so far behind. This I know.

And yet still, I'll be happy when this:

first foods

Turns into this:

first foods

I've admitted before that my least favorite part of being a mom is having to feed my darlings over and over and over again. Mere hours after one meal there comes another, and it's my job to prepare them and to clean up after them and to monitor their relative healthiness against the Standard American Diet (which we all know is just awful). And when they are young, mealtime is a messy affair. I swear, we still have Cheerios or puffs - some circular foodstuff, anyway - trapped under our baseboard heating where even the slimmest vac attachment can't touch them. There are still stains on the kitchen wall from P.'s puree days.

Someday I will regret feeling this way. I will wish for one more day of Stage 1 prunes flying through the air and finding its way into ears and nostrils. I will think wistfully about finding a pile of shredded cheese underneath the table. I will stroke the cold, hard surfaces of an impeccably clean kitchen and wonder why I ever worried about sticky fingers. I will meditate on mealtime through the forgiving lens of years gone by and sigh and remember the good times and the bad times, which were also good times that I just couldn't see as such in the moment.

This, too, I know.

7 comments:

  1. Awww, Christa, what a beautiful, perfect post. You have so accurately described how this gig feels, and it is amazing. Love this.-The Dose Girls

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  2. This is a nice reflection on the pluses and minuses of caring for wee ones. I am still mad that the future I thought we'd be living as depicted in The Jetsons has not come to fruition. I really thought robots would be feeding, cleaning up after, and diapering our babies.

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  3. This is so sweet. Thanks to this post I will go home and give my lovey a big hug and kiss. I think I'll be a sous chef for a homemade pizza too. Andrea @ be-quoted visiting from SITS.

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  4. I am SO glad I'm not the only one. For most things, I just wish I could slow down time. For meal time? I wish I never had to bother. Chloe used to be a nightmare to feed. She's better now, but I'm still so tired of cleaning food off the floor, and chasing her fork around the dining room since she NEEDS to throw it at least 20 times a meal, then screams to get it back.
    But I don't want them to ever go off and live their own lives! Well, I do, I'm just in no rush. I dont want 40 year old children living in my basement when I'm in my 60s. No, thank you.

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