Blog Pause Day Five: The beauty of revisiting this post is that all of the "about-to-be-born" babies I mention in the first paragraph have arrived. And since time just keeps passing, I'll note that some of them already are crawling.
Originally posted March 22, 2012
I'm surrounded by pregnancy and babies. Two of my friends, one local
and one distant, likely are rocking or nursing their newborns as I type
this post. Seven additional women I know are pregnant, all of whom are
due in the next few months. New chicks are hatching.
Last night I delivered a meal to my local friend. As I carried the
plates into her kitchen, I nearly sucked in my breath when I saw her
ten-day-old daughter sleeping in the baby seat stationed on the floor. Do they really come that small?
My three girls were in tow, following me like ducklings, all capable of
walking and eating and jumping and climbing and talking and doing so
many other things that this precious baby was not capable of doing.
Where did the baby stages go? Whenever I nuzzle my face into my
youngest daughter's curls, I still breathe in her scent as if she were a
Whenever I see her still-pudgy feet, I remember how I kissed and tickled and marveled at her newborn toes.
My children aren't babies any longer. At least, not when you compare them to a newborn.
Before we left, my friend asked if I wanted to hold her daughter. I
accepted immediately. She gingerly placed her in my arms and memories
flooded back: the silky hair, the squeaky noises, the wide-mouthed
yawns, the one-eye-opened and one-eye-shut unfocused glance around the
room before drifting back into a scrunch-faced sleep.
I look back at the pictures of my last pregnancy, knowing that I'm finished with this stage of life.
I study myself, knowing now that the photos captured me mere days before
labor. Alternatively, I remember the time as if it were yesterday and
wonder whether it was me at all. I regard the images with contradictory
closeness and distance, stepping along to an elusive dance of time and
These women I know, all of them, are living their lives in step with
their music: the rhythms of baby showers and baby kicks, the choruses of
sleepy newborns and nighttime feedings. If I glance back too much at
my earlier stanzas and steps, I start to lose focus on my current dance.
Our own routines seem so familiar to us as we live them. Nothing seems
inherently magical about a typical day with my girls when I'm in the
midst of it. Reese gets ready for school. Brooke curls on the couch
with me to read books while Kerrington takes her afternoon nap. I clean
up toys, prepare lunch, cook dinner, wipe up spills, sweep the floor,
empty the trash, fold the laundry, check the homework, help with baths,
say prayers, kiss goodnight, and then come downstairs for the quiet
night hours, tired.
It's a typical day in a house with kids who are almost-seven, almost-four, and almost-two.
But, from experience, I know that I'll eventually look back at pictures
from one of these typical current days, and I'll wonder how it's
possible that the moment feels simultaneously like yesterday and forever
ago. I'll remember the magic: how Reese dashed off the school bus and
flashed a smile with a new gap where her loose tooth used to be, how
Brooke rested her head on my shoulder as we read the same book again and
again, and how Kerrington reached out her arms and sang Mama! when I entered her room after her nap.
The one thing that's constant is time. It passes equally for each of
us. No matter how hard we may try, we can't stretch it out or hurry it
What we can do is embrace it, no matter how it's currently passing. Lord, I want to enjoy these days. All of these days.
Enjoy this post? Read more from Robin Kramer's book, Then I Became a Mother.