It feels like yesterday that you needed me for just about everything other than walking. I would wake you up, change your diaper, get you something to eat or drink, give you cuddles when you were tired, get you dressed, etc. I would push you on the swings and you would crawl up in my lap when you started to get sleepy.
Now things are different. Not a bad different just…different different.
I can lay out your clothes, tell you to get ready, and you can do it all yourself. You can do it all the way down to your shoes which are almost always on the right feet. Sometimes you’ll even go in and pick out your own clothes and I’m so proud that, most of the time, they match! You’ll go into the bathroom without being prompted and brush your teeth. All you need from me is a little help opening the mouthwash bottle.
You play by yourself and don’t always need me around for entertainment. I’ll be honest though, you’ve always been pretty independent with play time. You climb higher at the playground. You run faster and swing yourself. Instead of “Mommy, can you help me?” I hear “Mommy, LOOK!”. You can get your own snacks now. I’ll never forget the time you asked for a snack and when I came to get it for you, you had already gotten the jar down from the shelf, grabbed a bowl, and poured some for yourself. You had done it all yourself. You do a lot of things yourself these days and while I’m very grateful, I’m also a little sad.
You’re not a baby anymore. Well, you’ll always be MY baby, but to the world you’re not. Most days I’m only filled with pride that you have become so independent. I’m thankful that you can do so much for yourself so that I can help your little brother. But some days, it makes me a little sad. You don’t need me like you used to and you don’t need me quite as often. When I feel like that, I like to think of some of the things that still linger as well as all the new things I’m getting to experience.
We have more serious conversations and we can talk about your feelings. We walk side by side and you still want to hold my hand. You’re not embarrassed to hug and kiss me goodbye and you still miss me when I’m gone. You can help me pick out food at the grocery store or order at a restaurant. You remember your manners without being prompted. You’re doing so well at tae kwon do and can even teach us how to do a tornado kick! There’s so much more and I’m so proud of the little man you’re becoming. True, you don’t need me like you used to, but you need me in new ways and I’m so blessed that God chose me to walk through life as your mommy.