When You Don’t Want Your Children To Grow Up

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“Now, Maxie?” Josephine shouted.

“Not yet, GoGo!” Max responded.

They were sitting on two little roller coasters that you push with your feet, waiting one for the other to go down the little slope.

And, because her big hero brother said “Not yet” she waited and said, “Okay, Maxie…”

Then he would count, “One, two, three, GO!”

Their chubby little feet would paddle the ground and they would begin the slight decline down the coaster to soar onto the open floor.

Smiles and joy and squeals accompanying their little rides.

Then one would shout, without hesitation, “Let’s do it again!”

And off they’d push their cars to the top to begin again.

Friends—my two Littles are utterly exhausting.  I’m like super tired.  And they fight.  And they roll on the ground.  And they don’t like their food to touch—or when I cut their toast the wrong way.

My eyes are held open by VERY strong coffee…

But it’s ALL so worth it.

And my stomach is already nostalgic for the future loss of my Littles.

My decade daughter, as she calls herself, was once my Little…and I enjoyed every minute of it (let’s not relish in her own toddler tantrums that also split my hairs 😉 )…

She, in all of her innocent wonder, was my sunshine on any cloudy day.  And, believe me, in Poland there are a LOT of cloudy days.

Now she’s the epitome of beauty and grace.  She is tall and slender and lovely with a touch of awkward.  And growing.  She will, without any doubt in my mind, be a beautiful, successful, creative, and compassionate young lady—I already see that in her.

But it does not mean I don’t miss my Sweet Adelyne that used to skate on flour and make tea parties for her daddy with all of her dollies.

She has phased into young lady—that, very thankfully, still likes to occasionally play dolls, too!

And as my little miracle approaches his fourth birthday, I think.  No, I know that I am already missing him.

My toddler, naked bottom Max—without a care in the world.

Can I squish him into Little-ness forever?

Probably not—but I capture every moment of each of our days—the good and bad—on the reel of my on-going memory maker—the core of my heart…because I know that, as they grow, I will enjoy each new phase—but it will not mean that I will not miss the last one.

Josephine asked Maxie if he was ready—and he said “Not yet.”

Maxie—I am not ready, yet, either.

Please don’t grow.

But just like they paddled their feet and took off, I know what fate awaits me…

Their wild ride.

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Photo credit:  Inga Rurek

THIS Season in Life…

This Season in Life is spent in sleepless nights.

Touching the chest of a newborn to make sure she is breathing.

Taking random showers at odd times and feeling accomplished if I get my hair combed, clothes on, and remember deodorant (because, believe me, there were a couple times I forgot).

This Season in Life is full of caffeine.  Lots of it.

And comforting crying newborns.

And keeping little, toddling brothers from “applying” too much love to her soft spot!

This Season of Life is letting Daddy do Adelyne’s hair for school—and gratefully accepting it.

It is letting a 7-year-old pick out her clothes every day.  Despite the fact that, for the majority of the time, THEY DON’T MATCH!

It is feeding your 1-year-old hot dogs daily AND potato chips.  Because, right now, when he cries for them, he gets them (heaven forbid he WAKE THE BABY!).

This Season in Life is full of gratitude.

For God.  For my family.  For my friends.  For my husband.  And, especially, for my children.  Our brood of 3. 

Gratitude for sleeplessness and shower-less days.  For dirty diapers and mismatched clothes.   For messy homes and unkempt hair.

For in This Season of Life my heart is fuller.  My home is louder.  My time is less.  And my smile is bigger.

And until the next season of our lives, we will appreciate the crying babies, the double diaper duties, the messy 7-year-old, and the potato chip lunches.  Because, all too soon, this season will be over and my children will be older.  And I will spend my time wondering, with great nostalgia, where THIS season went…

And all I will have to remember it are fuzzy memories and photos stored on a digital card that I will have to remember to print—in my next season of life.

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