It is slipping away. And I know it.
As I watched my daughter play her recorder at her school’s music performance, the moment screamed at me like a sudden backfire from a car. This intersection of time will never happen again. And that’s when inside, a deep sense of sadness grips me, knowing that what is always turns into what was.
The swerve of my mind is captured in rounding those corners. I know my daughter does not need me in the ways that she once did before. In the morning, instead of guiding her through her routine, she just announces, “I am ready, Momma. Let’s go.” Last week, we were walking along the sidewalk outside a strip mall and I had her hand in mine. She looked up and said, “Momma, why are you holding my hand?” I didn’t know how to tell her that clasping her fingers into mine was more for my benefit than hers. She spits out her opinions out with gusto and does not always ask, as she did in the past, “What do you think, Momma?”
My push into the periphery is happening. In less than a month, my little girl will turn 8. I realize she is on the cusp of so much and my role as her mother will morph into helping her navigate into more complicated and layered situations. I realize that a pat on the back, a hug, or kissing a boo-boo that will make it all better will recede into the past. Gone are the days when she will believe that band aids make everything better. I suspect that she will start forming her own opinions and the days of fairy tales and Santa and the tooth fairy will become more myth than her reality.
As she sat in her chair upright, blowing her recorder, a part of me wanted to yell, “Stop!” I suspect so many of us have these conversations where, as time is passing, we want to preserve the moment as it is happening. I looked at my little girl and I tried to catch my breath. Her limbs filled in the chair and she sat in the chair upright, focused on the notes in the music. At one moment, she motioned for me to stop taking so many pictures.
I half-smiled. She is growing up. And with mixed feelings, I realized, that I am too.
Hi Rudri….I can only imagine at how having a small children changing in every way right in front of your eyes on a daily basis challenges you to stay in the now and appreciate the moment. Even without such constant reminders I AM challenged. But as you so elegantly put it in this post….if you don’t stop and just appreciate the “now” you’ll miss out on so much. ~Kathy
I loved reading this.
So sweet and so true. Our little girls are growing up before our eyes.
Yes…time is marching on . This resonates with me as my almost thirteen year old is so mature and I want to preserve every moment…and my almost 28 year old is not being able to spend Christmas with us because he is working in the hospital. I was putting up the tree and thinking of all this. Your daughter is beautiful inside and out and I believe that there are wonderful moments ahead. xo
I know this feeling well. It hurts and yet there’s nothing we can do to stop it. Thankfulness makes the moment its sweetest, despite the ache.
I can’t believe she’s almost 8! Where have all these years gone?
This is such a beautiful post, Rudri.
The cliche is true: They grow up too fast. Even so, every age and every stage has its own rewards and will find a special place in your heart.
All of these posts and all of the photos will preserve this time forever.
This is lovely – I have a 6 year old son who still comes to hug and kiss me for no reason. He still loves to be be coddled and snuggle – I know these days will end soon and I am not sure how I will handle that as he is my first born so these are all new experiences for me. I would always want to “rush” the next phase, how nice when he can tie his shoes, and put on his own clothes, and bathe/shower himself.. pretty soon he own’t need me at all and a part of me aches when I think about it. And just like you, there are several moments when I just want to yell “STOP.” Very well written post and enjoy the little moments Rudri! -Iva
I am feeling it too…very strongly lately!
You described this most difficult to describe feeling so well, Rudri. With a child just a year apart from your daughter I am feeling it every day. This summer when we were walking through the crowds in Tokyo I reached for my son’s hand, only to have him try and gently shake my hand off. He didn’t want to make it obvious, but I knew he was trying to avoid my hand. When I later asked him about it, he said, “It’s embarrassing.” I nearly gasped and thought, this is my turning point. But then later on in the week he let me hold his hand again. I’m finding that there’s a lot of that – 1 step forward, 2 steps back in our case. He is still a mama’s boy at heart but each day I’m taken aback by how different he is now from those days when motherhood still felt secure and like it would last forever.