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Monday, August 24, 2015

Growing up

The thing about kids is that they grow up.  Each new stage a confusing dichotomy of excitement and grief.  I know all you mommas out there can understand! Every new skill, a wonderful thing that we praise them for, but also a kiss goodbye to the child from yesterday. Each much anticipated birthday an admission of time passing.  We know the time goes fast because that's what every stranger in the grocery store tells us.  But, my goodness, how can it be possible that I have a kindergartner? For that matter, how can I have a three year old and a NINE month old? Nine months is almost a year and that means walking, learning to talk and destroy things.  One year also means baby weight transfers to real weight so I have my work cut out for me. Maybe if I squeeze the baby tighter time will slow down? It hasn't worked yet.

Molli has caught on to my not so subtle vibe that I'm not ready for her to be a big kid.  So much so that she's declared that this will be hear last real birthday.  From now on they will be pretend birthdays. That means, she will turn five and stop changing ages but will still get a party each year.  I approved instantly. Yes, let's do that so you will always fit on my lap and want me to read books to you.  You will stay a gangly wild child who wants to run around in bizarre clothing options make believing and bossing, then make cookies. You will always accept that I know everything, the car has wings that come out when kids sleep and that it is whatever time I say it is.  Stay my little princess monkey butt, baby girl.

Unfortunately, you and I both know how that works.  Kids grow up and with that they do new and exciting things.  Molli's kindergarten teacher came for a home visit before school started and in one of the papers she left for me to look over was this suggestion to prepare Molli for school:

Have frequent open and positive conversations about kindergarten.  Don't show regret to your child about "how old they are getting" and "can't believe" but state it in a positive manner.

My bad... clearly I failed at that part!  That evening I began making an effort to talk about all the positive, exciting and wonderful things coming up for her even though I cried a little inside.  At that point I realized  two things that I can never, ever forget.

1) It's not about me! From the moment her life was even a conversation between Myles and me, my wants and desires became second.  My life stopped being all about me and became something so much more beautiful and satisfying.

2) What a honor it is to age and watch my children do so! This might come across a little bit morbid, but truthfully, if I learned anything this summer, it is that life is so terribly fragile and something to rejoice over. Not everyone is granted full or long lives.  My nephew, Jude, weaves his way into my thoughts anytime I feel sad about my kids to stop growing up.  We are designed for life! We are designed to move forward and progress.  To wish that away is to wish away life and that is incredibly selfish (see #1).

So yes, my little girl started kindergarten and it's emotionally conflicting for a momma's heart.  But on this day, I am soaking up the relationship I have with her, knowing that she will keep growing and everything will continue to change, grow and advance.  I can celebrate in her growing up because despite the things I will miss about her being little, one day I will travel with her, go on roller coasters, teach her to drive and plan her wedding with her. Our relationship will definitely change, but I look forward to all the incredible experiences we will one day have.  I am finding joy in the new experiences she is getting and hope that this will continue to be my mindset as each of my babies grow into older versions of themselves.  What a blessing and honor it is to be a mom and to be trusted with these amazing people.

(The girl who started school)

(The boy who turned three)

(The one who outgrew his carseat) 

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