Feb 11

Time goes on

I admit that sometimes I wonder what life would be like if we did not have kids yet. The first thing that comes to mind is how CLEAN my home would be! Imagine only having to pick up after myself! And no one would suddenly decide to get out the Play Doh right after I finished vacuuming!

And sometimes I imagine life when Tim and I retire (if that ever happens! The kids are our “retirement fund,” lol). I think about being able to travel with just one suitcase apiece. Or just sitting around the living room at night, then deciding we want to go to a restaurant, and getting up to go to the car without first having to tie someone else’s shoes or find three pairs of mittens.

But despite these fantasies, I am really very terrified of one day having an emptier home. Of one day not having a baby that needs to be rocked to sleep, or a three-year-old that wants to play princess with me, or a first-grader that is just learning to keep journals and write out her thoughts and feelings. I know how fast the days go, because today  I have a seven-year-old when just yesterday she was an infant.

I was watching an episode of one of those “Hoarder” shows the other week, and the lady on it had saved every toy, etc. from her kids’ childhood. Her children were mostly preteens-teens now. She just couldn’t accept that they were growing up. For part of her therapy, her counselor had her repeat over and over, “I can’t get their childhood back.” She kept crying as she said it; you could see how much she was trying to hold on to a time that had passed.

Now, I am not at all a hoarder. I am more likely to do “clean sweeps” of all the kids’ toys three or four times a year and get rid of stuff as soon as I can. I can’t stand clutter. But I understand this lady’s heart. One day I will be in her position, with grown children.

Tim and I hope we are not done having children yet. I would love to have more babies. So my “baby-free” days may well be years and years away, but they are still there. I can enjoy these moments, cherish the times, slow down, savor each day, and all those other cliches you hear about having young children…but the days will still pass and just become memories.

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