Today I sat at an outdoor picnic table tucked between the walls of her cafeteria at school and the path that leads to the playground and grassy fields that make up her outdoor PE class. Just my girl and I, settled into the rays of sunshine as they trickled in on us and the few other tables reserved for “special lunch dates”. It was our time, between the waves of her classmates through the glass as they’d walk by or the birds chirping from the few trees nestled around us… and I couldn’t help but see how much she still needed me, and yet how independent of me she is already becoming.
This week we again visited a nearby splash park with our newly potty trained little Brayden and I just sat back and smiled as he ran in his “big-boy” swimsuit and diaperless, through the downspouts and trickling water, between the dumping buckets and around the slippery slide… not needing me, not needing anyone to guide him. He was unafraid and happy, leaving the timidity of last year at that very same place behind in one fell swoop.
Our babies, they grow. And as much fun as it is to watch them grow into their personalities and spread their wings, it also leaves behind this little empty place where their need for you begins to slowly fade from complete reliance to moments of asking for more, and moments of wanting… needing less.
With one more on the way, I’m already learning to balance his needs (because at this point, baby bunny is already asking for mama’s attention) with the needs of my other two and I’m realizing that they are naturally merging to a place of more independence.
This crazy, beautiful thing called motherhood, it’s breathtaking, and it hurts. It’s the wonderfully terrifying, and it’s the growing pains that every mother faces… right there alongside her children.
As I go through the cravings and growing stages that this littlest new one is giving me, I can’t wait to hold him in the crook of my arm, his soft, squishy skin against my own… and yet I know, his total dependence on me will only last so long. Thus goes the cycle of life, and the reminder to enjoy each and every stage, each and every moment, before we arrive at a new one.
Because new stages, they do come.
Wishing a very Happy Mother’s Day this weekend to all of you beautiful souls living this crazy beautiful life of motherhood!