I don’t often miss my babies, but when I do it comes over me in a wave so powerful I can feel their soft bodies in my arms and smell the baby smell of warm milk mixed with baby powder.
As I dropped my youngest off at school today, I thought of returning home to a quiet house with dishes and laundry to do, papers to grade, and the quietness of no interruptions. There were many days I longed for this. Oh, how I longed to have a few quiet hours with no little person tugging at my leg while her sister was screaming in the crib. But now that those days are here, I sometimes find myself suffocated by the quiet and missing the little warm bodies that needed me more than anything in the world. The way their bodies meld and fit so perfectly in my arms, The wispy hair that always seemed to smell so good, and even their sweet and sometimes not so sweet little cries are all part of an overwhelming stage of life that we usually wish away.
We can’t wait for them to grow more and more independent, to give us some of our independence back. And then you wake up one morning and realize you have arrived. That was it. That was all you got. Just a few years of never enough cuddles, wiping away tears, and being the center of their world. Now it’s friends, iPods, closed doors and navigating the reality of raising young adults. This stage is fun and beautiful in its own way, but so very different.
When we are in the midst of struggle and hard times, we often hear the adage, ‘This too shall pass.’ Unfortunately the same holds true with times we treasure.