He’s almost one. Five days more days will pass on by and as much as I’d like to stop time and freeze the moment, he’s going to be one year old.
365 days can go by in a blur of color and light and joy and fear.
But then it’s done. It’s over. That first year of magical moments that can never be again gets buried in the next year and the next and sometimes I’m afraid I will forget.
I don’t want to forget. I don’t want to lose the ache in my heart I feel every time I hold him when he’s sleeping or kiss the nape of his neck or tickle him to hear those gurgling squeals. It’s a good feeling. A healing ache. A reminder that even when I thought I knew exactly what I wanted, there was One who knew infinitely better than me.
It took nine months of pregnancy and the first few stumbling weeks of motherhood times four before I recognized that ache of pure joy. Delight. Amazement.
And it’s too easy to forget.
I know because sometimes when he’s been up three times in one night or he’s still shrieking because he’s eaten all the meatloaf on his plate and half the portion on Amelia’s and still wants more—I forget what a pure miracle he is.
So I’ve started a list for myself (and maybe for you) of those things about motherhood we tend to forget. I know writing isn’t for everyone, but I promise you’ll need this. You’ll want to remember these when that baby is a tantrum throwing preschooler and a sassy sixth grader and a capped and gowned graduate. Write it down.
I don’t want to forget to remember…
how baby hair smells.
how tiny and yet how strong the grip of his fingers.
how he would grunt and snort and sigh when nursing.
how easily his clothes fit in the drawers.
how we could roll him up like a burrito and still he would wiggle free.
how startled he was the first time he rolled over.
how I could sit for hours and hold him and not care about dishes or laundry.
how his hair curls over his ears and down into his eyes.
how he buries his face in the hollow of my neck before he goes to sleep.
how he bounces in the arms of the nursery workers when I come to the door.
how intently his eyes follow his sisters.
how he first crawled on his belly like a one-armed wounded soldier.
how he could sit forever in front of the glass door and watch the neighbors mow their lawns.
how he says “thank you” in the clearest little lisp.
how he crawls at lightening speed to the door the moment his daddy comes home.