Somehow, in the blink of an eye, my little Mimi has become a potty-trained preschooler who sleeps in her own full-sized bed.
Seriously, how did that happen?
I don’t know if my heart can take all the transitions my littlest has undergone the last few weeks.
Big girl underpants.
Big girl bed.
While I’m so very proud of her, I’m not exactly jumping up for joy like I did when Buddy accomplished these milestones. Because, one by one, these last remaining ties to her babyhood – diapers, cribs, rocking to sleep – are all disappearing right before me, all at once. And suddenly it’s clear that my baby – my last baby – really isn’t such a baby anymore. She is, as she never fails to point out, a big girl.
And she’s right.
I don’t think I ever really knew what bittersweet felt like. That is, until I had to pack up the crib and the changing table and glider that have been a part of our lives for the last seven years while simultaneously celebrating with Mimi and cheering her on as she takes these next steps into childhood.
And realizing — just like that — my time as the mom of a baby is over, and it’s time to move on.
Time’s a funny thing, isn’t it? Throughout all of these major milestones over the last week, I haven’t been able to get the Chantal Kreviazuk song, appropriately titled “Time,” out of my head. (Anyone else who watched “Laguna Beach” will recognize it as the song that closed out the series finale.)
This song sums up how I am feeling right now.
Did I appreciate all those baby snuggles when I had the chance? That intoxicating smell that only newborns have? The feeling of her nuzzled up against my chest as I nursed her? The way she could fit perfectly in my lap? Those dimpled, chubby thighs and gummy smile and coos?
Part of me is so tempted to wallow just a bit longer, but I know it’s not going to change anything. You can’t freeze, bottle or rewind time, as much as you desperately want to.
So now having acknowledged — and shared — these bittersweet feelings of sadness and nostalgia, I will move on and look ahead to this exciting new chapter in my little girl’s life. I will think about all the things I can’t wait to experience with her as she continues to grow up. And how lucky I am to be there for them.
Because time will keep moving forward. The only thing I can do is enjoy every second and try to keep up. And enjoy moments like this.