So, when I graduated from college, I came home to the street I grew up on being profoundly changed.
There was a tree infection so all the trees that stood in front of people’s houses were removed. Because I have a tendency to be a bit of a drama queen (#truestory), I waxed all philosophical in my journal about the trees being taken down with no one asking me first…kind of like my childhood being stripped away before I even knew it (I know, I know, when my husband reads my journals out loud, I just about die of embarrassment).
Anyway, it was a really sad moment in my life. I didn’t like being a grown up all of a sudden, and, truth be told, I spent the better part of my early 20s fighting it. My dad always said I was his child with the Peter-Pan complex, I wanted to stay young forever. Not like, ‘young because I don’t want to look old’, but more like, ‘hot dang, life goes by so darn fast, you blink and it’s over’ type of thing.
So, keeping that in mind, it’s no surprise watching my babies grow up has taken on a new twinge of sorrow.
Because it really is happening so fast. On ‘the facebook’ I shared that we moved John Paul out of our room this weekend. He has done so well with the transition, and he is seven months old- so it makes sense. His feet were starting to stick out of the end of the bassinet and it was bending at his weight (I don’t have small kids). However, more than any other kid, I felt a real sadness at our seemingly empty bedroom. We don’t think he will be our last baby, but there really are no guarantees. Transitioning him was tough emotionally, because I was forced to face how quickly this is all going by.
It’s hard...our reality, harder than I can even describe to most people. Having three babies, so close in age is something very few people in our society understand (I adore those of you that do). It’s looney tunes, truly. You really should have seen the fiasco that was Church on Sunday. When we got in our van to drive home, Big Aaron and I just looked at each other because we couldn't believe what had just transpired. When I tell you that my husband, on the way to receive Jesus was one handing the baby, whilst holding the oldest up by his overall straps…I am not exaggerating. My gosh it is hard.
But it is so so awesome. Being in the ‘thick of it’ is this unique experience of love and sacrifice that is hard to describe. I get glimpses of the awesome when I watch the two oldest play together, or I watch lil’ Aaron talking softly to John Paul. I get glimpses of the awesome when I ask my husband if he is tired and his answer is, ‘always’ with a smile. I get glimpses of it when we wake up in the morning, dad gets donuts and I play with the kids quietly with the tv off. There is a whole heck of a lot of awesome seen at my house on the regular.
And I don’t want to forget it…so, without further ado, here’s some things I don’t want to forget…
Dear God, help me remember..
…lil' Aaron sings, ‘twinkle twinkle little stars' not star, but stars.
...Joey says, ‘yes’ with kind of a roar, and always raises his hands, like he is ready for a major sporting event
...lil' Aaron asked to jump in joey's bed to kiss him goodnight
...I had to remind Joey to be gentle, because he squeezes too hard
...Joey drools so much we have to change shirts on the regular
...Lil' A always offers Joey the worst car when he is asked to share ;) and doesn't think we notice
...Lil' Aaron always wants to lay right next to John Paul on the floor
...Lil' Aaron asks to be my baby, and when he does, always looks me so deeply in the eye
...Lil' Aaron snuggles with his dad in bed, and they talk, and mom isn’t invited
...When my boys wake up, the first thing they do is say, 'Mommy'
...How lil' Aaron knows they watch a 'show first' 'then get up'
...Joey's clumsiness and the snuggles that come with each fall
...Joey's smile, the one that is big and toothy, and sometimes drooly
...The way Joey looks at his brother, eager to learn all he will teach
...The way Joey loves books and brings them to me all the time, but never has the patience to sit still
...At Church, he said, ‘jesus hurt, that makes me sad’
...Joey won't watch a show on the ipad, unless he gets to push the buttons
...Joey runs from me, but laughs hysterically when I say bedtime
...The way Joey says, ‘fly mama’ again. And again. And again. Then I get annoyed, then I feel grateful :)
...Their giggles, oh God, their giggles. Thank you sweet Jesus for their giggles
...Lil Aaron says, ‘hold me’ when he is scared. Not when he wants to be held, but when he is scared
...the way lil' Aaron talks to himself when he plays, setting up monster truck tracks all over the family room
...The way they love their grandparents. Both sets. Equally. It stuns me.
...The way Lil' Aaron asks for a ‘special treat’
...The way John Paul laughs, have you ever seen a baby laugh like that.
...The way they stand on the couch and just WAIT for their dad to get home, and how, when we first bought this house, I thought about my children waiting for their dad to get home.
...When lil' Aaron says, ‘why you yelling mama, I don't understand’ and reminds me, so painfully, to stop yelling
...When we do animal sounds, and lil’ joey knows them so well, so early.
...When they want kisses, and snuggles
...How they love their baby brother, oh gosh, they love him
...The smell John Paul has in the middle of the night when I'm so tired- but the baby smells so good
...The way John Paul wont sleep in my arms, but rolls his eyes to the side when I lay him down
...The way John Paul swiftly tosses his head to find a comfortable spot
...How he is six months old. SIX MONTHS but I can’t bear him not being by my side
...The way my husband plays when he plays with our children
...Family trips and holding my husband's hand
...Teaching my boys to talk to Jesus quietly
...Blowing kisses to Jesus when we get to Church
Sometimes I am aware, it is all going by so fast, and I never want to forget this special time in our family's history.