Big.

How is it double-digit July already? And how is my kid practically reading?

Ok, he’s not reading, quite. But he is really on the verge. Sounding letters, listening for words that start the same. Matching pictures and words. The whole thing. Inventive spelling is right around the corner and if I put in the time and he stays as interested as he is right now, he could easily be reading by this time next year.

His recent stab at writing the word “circle.” (That second letter is an “R”)

He jumps off the side of the pool now. Into nothing. Right into the water. Sure, I reach down and grab him up before he sinks (he’s not a swimmer yet) but this boy who refused to let go of my bathing suit top (sorry, everyone at the pool, for the multiple unintentional viewings of my ladies) is now “reaching and kicking” and sliding under water and back up without any trauma whatsoever.

Standing at the top of the slide for the zillionth time, which less than two weeks ago scared the crap out of him.

He is a “big kid.” It’s so clear to me. I hear his voice and the way he puts sentences together and see the things he can do and although he is still very much my baby and still very much a little kid, he is big. And getting bigger. There’s no getting off this ride and I’m not having any more kids and I have spent two of the last three nights lost in watching old videos of his baby days.

I totally understand why people keep having babies. Of course, there is the “I want my kid to have siblings” argument. But it also has to be about wanting to re-immerse yourself as a parent in the growing of a child. To re-experience the babyhood, the steps, the learning, the figuring it out. The Who is my first kid. Everything he does will always be fascinating to me and new for the both of us. Kindergarten, middle school, learning to drive, first dates — all of it. I get it and I am excited and eager to see it and experience it all. But there is something intoxicating about the first years when the basic elements of being a full-fledged human are emerging. Walking, talking, eating. And as The Who starts to outgrow some of that novelty, I am starting to miss it.

I’m grappling with wanting him to flourish and learn and move forward, but also wanting to hang onto the coattails of his babyhood. I’ll let him go, of course. He’ll fly. But I’m still going to grab him around his waist and smother him in kisses every chance I get.

Slow down, kiddo. Slow down.

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One thought on “Big.

  1. Poignant and every mother worth her salt understands all of these feelings and their ramifications…and with second kids it’s not quite as remarkable and mothers are busier, which is a little sad, tho each kid is different…and you, the second one, were reading way before kindergarten — if you remember in kindergarten you had a special group of two who got special books beyond what the class was doing….

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