Where did it go?
I was folding laundry today and held up this green onesie that says “Daddy and I Love Mommy” on it. I was overwhelmed suddenly with this urge to cry, to sob into it like a little handkerchief. I had to catch my breath quickly as Puppy was just under my feet, singing songs with words only tiny people and their mothers understand. The onesie is stained and stretched out, almost too small for him, the neck hole is stretchy and the arms aren’t quite long enough. It’s a 12-month sized shirt. I remember when I was pregnant and we got that shirt from The Dad’s sister. I looked at it hanging there in the closet every day that I was pregnant, completely unable to imagine a world in which I had a son big enough to fill a shirt as big as that. It was already my favorite shirt he would ever wear, and he wasn’t even here yet.
Someday soon, I will have to retire the green onesie. Puppy knows at least 25 words in sign language already. I’m certain he might write his name next week. After that, he’ll be driving. What am I going to do?
I was just now looking at some pictures of a friend’s children. Some of the pictures were from a couple of months before the little girl turned two. And suddenly, I realized, this year, Puppy will turn two. Two! And in the moment that thought struck me, I prayed for November never to get here. I just wanted time to freeze, for my beautiful, amazing son to stay little and promise to cuddle with me at night forever and never grow up. Immediately after this, I was ashamed. I thought to myself, Am I afraid I won’t like the older version of Little Puppy?
No, it’s not that. I am just so wildly in love with him the way he is right this very minute, and I must mourn on a regular basis as each minute he becomes someone new. I’m not worried in the least bit who he’ll turn out to be when he’s grown up. This week, I saw a mother post an online status for her son’s 1-year birthday saying, “I can’t wait to see who he will become!” and at first I agreed with her. But then I thought, How sad! Who cares who he is later? He is somebody right now!
There is very little substance to this post, other than my rambling on about what a tragedy it is for children to have to grow up all the time. But one day, I’ll be seething mad at a teenager, and I can look back and remember this feeling, this desperate love for him in all his chubby baby glory. I’m going to bed, now. There’s cuddling to be done.