Dear Kids, As you grow older…

Dear Kids,

Right now as I watch you sleep, I lean in so close I can feel your breath against my cheek. I think about the good moments today. I think about you touching my arm and telling me a story about a slug that you found by the water. I grin to myself alone in the dark. I think about our conversations and I realize how grown up you’re becoming. How did it happen so fast?

You are perfect laying there so still; my heart swells like it might burst. Motherhood has  made me so strong and so fragile at the same time. Since the day you were born I’ve worn my heart on the outside of my body. Everyday I fight against the urge to lasso the world and make it tame for you. I wish I could keep you in a bubble.

I wish I could keep you safe here with me forever, but I will use all my strength and I will give you wings instead my love; then I will cry the day you use them.

You are growing up and sometimes I still see you as little. That’s frustrating for you I know. I don’t trust you even though it’s time. I see it, but it can’t be. It was only one second ago that you crawled in my bed in the morning with just your diaper and we’d snuggle until the sun came up. It was only one second ago that you were sitting in your carseat behind me mimicking some choice words I shouted at traffic.

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It was only one second ago that I had a tiny crew and no one was taller than my waist; It was only one second ago.

Everyone warned me of how fast it goes, but it didn’t make me ready.

I am often caught up in the busyness. A mess in the kitchen, an email I haven’t written yet, and a car that looks like a hurricane of crackers and juice ravaged the upholstery. There are meals to make, mountains of laundry to do, blankets needing to be soaked from a bloody nose last night…and there is the constant inner struggle with feeling like it’s too much, I can’t catch up. 

I don’t want to miss any moments with you, but I do.

As I look at you beneath the blankets I wonder how it is possible your legs are so long and your arms so lanky. We bought you deodorant the other day and you need it more than I do. When I think about the times to come I feel excited, but so so scared. I know I’m going to close my eyes for a moment and my time with you will be coming to a close.

I can’t even handle the thought, so I don’t think.

I reach out and squeeze your hand.

I understand that book now. I understand why an old lady would sneak into her son’s room at night.

I love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be. 

As long as I’m living I will remember you curled up on my chest. As long as I’m living I will cherish the moments of your chubby hand in mine. As long as I’m living…

I know you won’t understand until you have your own kids someday, and that’s okay. I didn’t understand either.

It is the greatest honor of my life to be your mom. You are truly a treasure that I’ve been entrusted with and I will never be the same. Your heart is so soft and tender, your eyes are bright and kind. You forgive me faster and love me harder than anyone I’ve ever met.

I’ve have been raised by raising you, and I am so grateful.

Please stop growing; please keep growing.

Motherhood is constant grief and constant joy. It’s so much anticipation and so much letting go.

I love you forever and for always,

Mama

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*Love You Forever, by Robert N. Munsch

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17 thoughts on “Dear Kids, As you grow older…

  1. Gobblefunkist

    Oh God, I KNOW.
    I hate to send my kid to school because she will fly the nest in a few years and I won’t have her around me. Makes me a bad mom, I suppose.

  2. Erica EW

    Thank you! This is my life right now! I have 3 kids, ages 7yrs old and under (a 4yo and a 1yo). I look at them in awe constantly!

    My oldest is starting 1st grade this year (but does a mix of higher grade work depending on the subject. Like he ended his Kinder year of school by already completing beginning 2nd grade level Math!). And my middle is a PreK kid (but does mostly Kinder level school work). They are too gifted educationally, I cannot keep up with them… And I’m their teacher!

    It is incredible how they sponge up every teeny detail of information thrown at them. I can only pray that I’m throwing out the correct/ good info they need.

  3. Sue Roth

    Jess…thanks. Not been a mother. But you always are an encouragement to be authentic, unique.

  4. eightegg1

    Thanks Jessica…but it doesn’t end with the little ones growing up….I still do this and think this as my six are married and have families of their own. I stand in wonder and awe at all they are, all they are becoming and in simple humility that they are mine…I am so blessed.

  5. Becky

    Beautifully written. My heart aches. I remember all of these moments and my daughters are 30 and 33. Thank you for always sharing these precious feelings! ❤️

  6. atticsister

    You brought back so many memories and made me wish for more time all over again. My only child blessed me with two more chances to feel that fleeting wonder and awe. My grandsons now hold my finger with chubby hands and bring me dandelion puffs, tell me fantastic stories and dream of unbelievable things. I know all too soon that also will pass before I can catch my breath and that is just the nature of life….fleeting but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I live for those heart felt moments we share and treasure each as a blessing.

  7. justamama

    so, so beautifully written, brought tears to my eyes. I can relate to every word, yet would never be able to articulate my thoughts so perfectly. Thank you.

  8. StingyBoots

    This is so touching❤️ I’ve been a mother for all of 12 wks and already I see so much difference in my adorable baby girl. Each day she surprises me with something new and every night I am so thankful to be blessed with her in my life. You sound like an amazing mum❤️

  9. Pingback: Dear Kids, As You Grow Older – Her View From Home

  10. erin

    omg, died laughing amidst my tears at “i understand that book now…” i don’t read it to my kids because i always think that it’s just a little weird but seen in this light i can appreciate it much more! always love your words! shared this post with my MOMS group.

  11. MammyTugboat

    This has just brought tears to my eyes. My little boy is only 16 months but he is my world. Even now I sometimes sneak in to watch him sleep. I miss our afternoon naps together which stopped out of the blue…..they grow up far too quickly!

  12. Beth

    Now I am crying….at work! Thanks so much for your words. These are my feelings. My son is now 19. It was just a second ago he was born, I swear!

  13. Nish DyosaTheMomma

    “I wish I could keep you safe here with me forever, but I will use all my strength and I will give you wings instead my love; then I will cry the day you use them.” Oh, how I almost cried after reading this line! Can’t imagine the day that I’d have to give my little girl her wings!

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