As our kids grow up, we often think of times gone past. "Remember when...?" we wistfully ponder. Here are a few things I miss about my kids "younger" years:
I miss the lamb-like cries of a new born.
I miss the toothless, full-body smile of a four-month-old.
I miss the sumo wrestler thighs of my six-month-olds.
I miss sleepers. With feet. Is there anything more lovely than hugging a baby in a one-piece sleeper?
I miss the newly-walking toddler who drags the favourite stuffed animal behind them.
I miss how stacking tins of tuna can amuse them for an hour.
I miss how they readily ate every new food I offered.
I miss how perfectly they fit in the contours of my body, feet tucked into my tummy, when snuggling in bed.
I miss their peculiar "dialects" as they learned to speak. Like how Neva used to say "all by my Neva's self". Or when Milo, at two, would call Willa "La-la-beela". And how Willa always said, "that feel me better".
Now the lamb-like cries have been exchanged for ear-splitting shouts from the hormonal pre-teen or her saucy 5-year-old sister. The newly-walking toddlers are now riding their two-wheeled bikes faster than I can keep up. If only tuna tins were as enthralling as the 24-7 cartoon channel or Super Mario. New foods only push out old favourites, as if there is a finite number permitted in the repertoire. And don't get me started on chubby thighs!
But every new stage has its own rewards, like Neva's sincere and hearty laugh when she's with her best friend; Milo's toothless grin when he lost his two front teeth not too long ago; now I get to watch Willa learn to read, Milo whiz through math and Neva put her creative imagination to paper. And, best of all, they all still like to have me lie down with them at bedtime and climb into our bed early in the morning.
I know in 5 and 10 years' time I'll be lamenting the loss of the days I'm living right now. So here's to the present. And to snuggling with your kids -- at any age!