A Week Late But She Is Still Growing

October 22, 2014

Try as I may to stop the hands of time, I just can’t. My life continues to move at an accelerated speed that I cannot keep up with. I am reminded of this every time my girls hit new milestones (or when I get a year older). My 5-year-old started kindergarten, my 3-year-old started preschool and now my youngest, my little baby girl, has turned 1.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY Little Itty Bitty!!!

Actually, Happy Belated Birthday!

She turned 1 last Tuesday. I hoped that if I procrastinated long enough her birthday wouldn’t come; hoping she wouldn’t get a year older; that she would stay my little baby. That didn’t happen. She still turned 1. She still had her birthday party (2 in fact).

Soon she will be the last one to trot off to preschool while her two older sisters will know what’s “cool” in school. Soon she will graduate from preschool and be the annoying little sister that wants to follow her two older sisters when she starts kindergarten. Then comes middle school, high school, graduation, college and… Oofda!! Please, let me stop.

There is no need to rush. I do not need to look to the future. She still needs to learn how to walk. Right?

Wait… Never mind. She is learning how to walk. She took about 5-6 steps today. Well, she still needs to learn how to talk… Hold on one second…. Our family went north to visit my wife’s grandma (Her name is Grammy to our girls) over the weekend. She decided that her favorite word to say would be puppy. She said puppy so much that Grammy thought she was being named puppy.

I suppose there is no need to worry about her growing up too fast. Yes, she can say words like Mama, Dada (can I boast that Dada was her first word? Would that be wrong?), boat, baby, Baba, ball, boom, boo , moo (Thanks Uncle), Ack (Jack our dog), peas (please), up, yeah, anku (thank you), and weeeee.

Wow! Really? Seriously? From the vocabulary she has now, I’m fairly certain that she will be asking me every why question in the world tomorrow.

Yesterday she was a very tiny, little baby (truth be told, she was the biggest baby of all 3) that we JUST took home from the hospital. It was just yesterday that she fit on one arm. Seriously, it was just last night that she fell asleep on my chest while she and I napped. The night time feedings, the irregular sleep schedule, the very disgusting diapers that developed from black to brown; those were all just yesterday. Right?

My Little Itty Bitty is still my baby. She may have started walking (isn’t walking the beginning of Toddlerhood?), she may have expanded her vocabulary (Thankfully she hasn’t learned how to say no) but she is still my little baby girl. Her sisters love her so much, they try to imitate her noises. They also celebrate her every step and word she says (reminding me that all of them eventually grow up).

When my first child was born, everyone said, “Enjoy it. They grow up fast!” I replied, “Oh yeah, I’m sure. I’m sure they do. I know babies grow up fast.” Blah, blah, blah. Seriously, I had no idea.

Everyday I am reminded of a book about a mother and her child. In the story the mother talks about every “precious last”: Last kiss and hug good night, last tuck-in at night, last chance to carry her child in her arms, last dance, last score on a sports team. The author asks if she would have held on longer to that “last” moment if she would have known there wouldn’t be another one.

I can relate to the book on so many different levels. My girls haven’t scored their last points for a team, nor have they had their last tuck-in at night. I can still hold them in my arms (although my 5-year-old is growing up a little too much to carry long distances compared to my 1-year-old), I can still dance with them without embarrassing them. I can still say, “I love You,” and give them a kiss on their cheeks. I can give them big bear hugs and receive one in return.

Unfortunately, there will come a day when my oldest will no longer need me, my second youngest will think I am crazy while my Little Itty Bitty baby will follow suit.

HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY Little Itty Bitty!! Thank you for all the ginormous smiles you have given me over the past year!! I pray there will be many, many, many more. Please… Please…. don’t grow up. I’m not ready for it.