Monday, June 29, 2009

Never Ending Stream of Goodbyes

I am overwhelmed, today – and was overwhelmed yesterday, and the day before that, and am certain that I will be similarly overwhelmed tomorrow – with this singular thought: I do not want my boy (or children in general) to grow up.
I don’t. I just don’t. I know that his future is bright and amazing and that the him that he will be in that bright and amazing future is a him that I will adore with every ounce of the intensity that I adore him now, and then some! But...


At this precise moment I am so in love with Toddler Him -- with his soft, bright red hair and his tiny -toothed grin and his chubby bum and his small-ish, grabby fists that clutch and hold and cling to me and the fact that I can press him to me and just hold, just hold on to his squiggly, wiggly self and breathe him in and pretend that we are still two pieces of one body.

This him, this incarnation of the human being that he is, this small, precious, sweet-smelling clutchable form of him – this I want to keep. This I want not to lose.

I know that this is impossible; wrong, even. I know that I should rejoice in the fact that he grows, thrives, marches, leaps, runs, tumbles! – steadfastly forward into his own future. And I do rejoice in this, just as I have rejoiced in the transformation of his sisters from babies into bigger girls. But I also mourn.

This is a truth about being a parent that nothing and no-one can prepare you for: parenthood is a continual experience of loss, a never-ending stream of moments of goodbye.

From the moment your children come into your life you are losing them. That the person your child is today is a person you will never meet again -- a person that you will, in some ways, forget as he or she is replaced by new people, bigger people, faster people, people with more words, people with more independence, people whose primary purpose is to move continually away from you.

Oh! The heartache has begun. I am trying to cherish all of these moments and phases of life with my wee ones, but there is still a part of me that is truly overwhelmed. And in mourning...

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