Friday, November 11, 2011

I Cannot Stop Them

They are growing and I cannot stop them. There is nothing I can do. I wish I was talking about my breasts, but alas, it is not the case. I am referring to these folks:

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Sam and Emma. Emma and Sam. My offspring. I remember going to Vegas once and having lunch at New York, New York. There was a Sam & Emma sandwich at the NY Deli. I named my kids long before that sandwich, so I considered suing for some kind of name rights, but got distracted by the Wheel of Fortune (WOF) slots and forgot.

I am not kidding. I love the WOF slot machine. And, I don’t even like slot machines. I am strictly a black jack player in Vegas (craps is much to statistical and smart for me, but I am damn good at some BJ – TWSS). Once I was playing BJ at the Hard Rock. I stepped away and put $20 in the dollar WOF slot machine. I won $750. I put it right into my kids college fund or lost it at BJ. I can’t remember which.

P1090869

I always lay down at the slots machines and pass out. They love it when you do that.

Anyhow, I cannot stop these damn kids from getting older. I cannot paralyze this moment in time and make it stay this way. Nor would I really want to.

I turn around and Sam’s voice is nine octaves lower and he is mentioning taking Driver’s Ed this summer (Yes, you can now do that when you are 14. I will post an alert when Sam is on the road so you can stay home). This year on his birthday, Sam didn’t even want me to get into bed with him to read him the story of the day his was born (I guess that gets creep at 14).

He said, “Mom I kinda know it from the last 14 years. There was a snowstorm. Your water broke. You went to he hospital. You pooped on the table. I came out sunny side up. You and dad had never been so happy, blah, blah, blah.” Sheesh. You’d think he’d at least want to hear it again just to go through the poop part, but no, he’ s over it.

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Forever the ham. I have no idea where he got that.

And my dear, sweet Emma. At ten years old she’s caring a lot about whether her pants are skinny or boot cut. She is showing who she is by how she treats the people and animals in her life. This week I saw an email she sent to a friend when the friend’s dog was put to sleep:

“I'm really sorry about Scooter. I know how much you loved her, but things always happen for a reason, so I just wanted you to know,that I'm still there for you no matter what. :)”

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Don’t get me wrong, I don’t spend my days fixating on my kids getting older. But, every once in awhile I’ll have an experience that slaps me upside the head and reminds me that I cannot stop them. You know how sometimes you aren’t affected by stuff and other times you turn into a puddle of slobbering mess? It must depend on that time of the month or other things going on in your life. It can be random and really take you by surprise (Hallmark commercial anyone?).

At 6:00 a.m.. this morning I took Emma to meet the school bus at a local high school. She was selected to be a “shagger” (ball girl) at the high school state volleyball tournament in Denver for two days. In the dark and cold I stood with her as she waiting to board the bus.

This morning I wasn’t a slobbering mess, but I got that stinging in my nostrils that signals that my eyes are filling up . I knew Emma wouldn’t be gone long. Not like she was leaving for the whole summer or God forbid, college. Yet, I just felt her moving one more small millimeter away from me. I walked away towards my car and turned around to see her looking back at me. I think she felt it a little bit too. Lately, I’ve been just wanting one day, maybe one hour, back.  A time when I could cuddle her two-year-old chubby, diapered body in my lap and read her Big Red Barn.

It’s life. You can’t stop it. There are no rewinds or fast forwards. Sometimes you want to skip where you are and jump ahead. Sometimes you want to go back to easier or better days. The truth is if you are wishing it away, fearing for the future, or pining for what was, you are missing today. TODAY. TODAY. I always want to know that I loved and appreciated today. Because when tomorrow comes, everything has changed and nothing is ever quite the same.

If you have kids, do you ever feel like you want to go back to when they were littler, or fast forward to when they are more independent? I don’t really want to go back or forward, I love the ages that my kids are now. It’s just sometimes I get all sentimental and nostalgic.

If you don’t have kids, do you see them in your future?

SUAR

46 comments:

  1. Thanks for this. I was having a frustrating day with my 3 and 4 year old today. Sometimes I wish they'd just get older and more independent, but I think I'll take the frustrations that can come with these years a bit longer.

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  2. You're right, you can't stop them growing. Kids or your breasts. And that's a good thing. Because otherwise how will your kids take care of you when you get told?

    We won't even get into breast growth consequences, but there's no upside there.

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  3. I had a moment like that with my almost 10 y.o. yesterday. I took her to the dentist, where she was too old to want to color on her bib but young enough to still want a balloon. I wanted to hug her all the way home...

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  4. So nicely said!

    As I approach my birthday (tomorrow) I usually focus on my mom for all she and daddy did to (save me from myself) raise me. But this year, I'm thinking a lot about what my year has allowed me to do. Not jus the running blah blah that I go on about in my blog but the real stuff. My oldest is making huge leaps "away", my daughter is also 10 and growing her own attitude and personality, and the little guy still lets me hold him (when he wants me too). Tomorrow I'll celebrate having had a year with the amazing people who help shape me and be thankful for the hope of another one to come.

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  5. great post. It is very true and I'm experiencing that with my step-son and I love today but I love tomorrow more b/c that is one more day down before he leaves for college, gets his own place and moves the hell out of mine......I only have 13 more years to go which is better than the 17 I had when I first met him. Progress.

    Oh, my friend we are playing CRAPS in Vegas. How could we not? Seriously the name alone shows its a game for us.

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  6. I have an 18 month old. I found myself wishing away the first year. "I can't wait until he doesn't eat every two hours." "I can't wait till he can hold is own bottle." "I can't wait until he sleeps through the night."

    Now I find myself feeling the pangs of "OH MY GOD, WHERE IS MY BABY?!"

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  7. Loved this post!

    I'm pregnant with my first and can already tell I'm going to miss this part of my life.

    I love feeling the baby move around and watch it kick and wiggle inside my tummy. I'm going to miss that, for sure!

    I know I'm going to be a blubbering mess once this baby arrives and starts growing, hitting milestones, graduates high school... *sigh*

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  8. We all need that reminder. Thank you! I also don't know how I can laugh so hard (birth story) and cry in a matter of minutes! I have those same feelings of my boys growing up when I check on them before I go to bed. They somehow look much bigger when they are sleeping in their beds.

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  9. Just wait til they're over 21. It's great fun to drink with the kids.

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  10. I pooped on the table with one of mine too!

    Gotta be honest. 3 boys at ages 8, 5 and 2... Yikes. I try not to wish their lives away but DAMN! (especially the 2 year-old, who I caught drinking a bottle of pancake syrup yesterday).

    Thanks for the reminder to live in the now though. It's always good to hear that.

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  11. Great post... made me teary. I have a two year old and I don't want her to get another day older =(

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  12. Love..love...love my kids ages right now. I have a 14,12 and 8 year old (2 girls and a boy) couldn't be better.

    I don't want to go back and I don't want them getting more independent....I am enjoying the right now!

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  13. Love this post! My Emma is only turning 3 next month and I already want to stop time....unless is a temper tantrum day!

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  14. We're trying. I had a miscarriage 4 weeks ago- but we just got the ok to start trying again.

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  15. I don't have kids, but I have dogs though, and they've pooped on the table before. I sometimes wish they were puppies again and that they can't reach the counters, or when they chew things up I don't get as mad cause they don't know any better!

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  16. Two boys...15 and 12. Been staring at the youngest a lot lately (creeping him out a bit) and thinking he won't be this sweet little boy for much longer. He's getting tall and the voice is just starting to change....miss the cozy book times we used to have...15 year old had no interest in his birthday story this year either!

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  17. My only child is almost 19 and I, who have never really had much patience for babies (which is why I only had one), have found myself wishing the same thing. I just want to cuddle with his little chubby 12-18 month old self, and pat his little diaper bottom one more time. I guess that's the joy of eventually having grandkids.

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  18. I'm about to move so as I clear out closets and throw things away, I stumble on pics from when my daughter was just a baby. That leads me to watching videos from then. The last four years have been a complete and constant rearrangement of life and it has all happened so quickly.

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  19. Great post. My kids are almost two years old, and it just seems like every stage is better than the last. I don't want to skip ahead, I don't want to go back, but I feel this borderline desperation to cling to them RIGHT NOW - to focus on them and cherish all of the moments because it goes so fast.

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  20. Thank you for turning me into a blubbering mess :) My two year old is already "no thank you mommy. color by myself". Um, heartbreak. We're expecting #2 in May, and we're looking forward to the 'little-ness'.

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  21. Loved this post. I feel so nostalgic sometimes...my kids are 9 and 6...but really, I love where we're at right now too. Every stage has it's highs and lows, but right now is all we've got, so I'm crazy about it. I'm thankful that both my boys still put up with me hugging and kissing them in public, too. I will still be doing it when they're 30, so they better just keep dealing. :)

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  22. My Miss Abbey will be 21 next week. I look at lot at her life over the past few years - so many different phases - and it definitely makes me a little sad. She comes home now for about an hour once a week (and I know I need to be grateful for that hour) and it seems like I know nothing about her anymore. *sigh*. The boys are so into their high school lives and friends and I can't help but think in two years, when they're both off to college, I'm going to have to adopt some Asian babies....or a puppy! :)

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  23. your kids are beautiful.

    I do sometimes feel like my kid is growing up quick - He's only four but he's becoming a little kid and no longer my little baby…

    BTW way BJ rocks! Um. You know what I mean ;) I actually also like craps and poker…

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  24. LOVE this post. I don't have kids, but I work with high school students. And every year when the next class graduates I feel like I am watching the end of Toy Story 3. Even though I'm so freaking excited for them to go rock college, I love them so much I wish I could stop them from growing up and leaving me - and they aren't even my own kids. Moments I need a few laps around the track - pretty sure Running = Super Cheap Therapy =) It's good to be reminded to focus on the ones in front of me TODAY - thanks for that =)

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  25. Oh man, this post really got me. I have two kids and my daughter, Emmy, is 2. 2 is great but 2 is tough. I find myself wanting either to rewind or fast forward but just not be in the terrible twos anymore! This might be because she peed in her pants 3 times today. Just be glad those days are done!!!

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  26. WOW, I am totally crying! Somedays I feel so bad because I want to rush the bedtime routine of storyreading, because I am just so tired too by the end of the day, but that is one of the few times when we can just be chill together all snuggly. I need to cherish that time because it won't be there forever!

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  27. Even though my sons are older than your children - 23 & 19 - they are still my children. I always listen to people talking about keeping their kids a certain age. But I always LOVED each and every age. I actually think that it always gets better . . . or at least I have always enjoyed each and every stage of their life better than the last. I will admit, I miss certain parts of it - but the parts that I miss are now filled with new experiences and things that I could never havce imagined . . . heck at some point my sons will get married and have children . . . giving me grand babies . . . how cool would that be! ;-)

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  28. Emma looks a bit like Reese Witherspoon in that photo (although with bigger, prettier eyes!).

    I'm 31 and I just don't know how I feel about children. I went through a period in my mid-twenties when I was obsessed with having a baby, but at the time my husband wasn't ready. He says he's ready now, but my baby mania has long since faded, and now I wonder whether I want one (or more) at all.

    Honestly, there are many, many factors I consider when I think about having kids, but I would absolutely be lying if I said that my running has nothing to do with my feelings. I can't imagine not running for even a couple of months, nor can I imagine not racing while my child is an infant. While I'm SO glad I discovered running back when I was in my later twenties, I'm a bit jealous of you for not discovering the sport until you were done with pregnancies and infants. I think it would be so interesting to hear a post from you about how you think you would have felt about having kids if you'd been a distance runner at the time. Just as a thought experiment, how would you feel at this point in your running life if you were facing 9 months of the unknown (women are so different with what they can do running-wise during pregnancy), followed by more months of unknown ability to train or race?

    Whenever I'm injured over the years, it takes only about 2 weeks of not running until I literally burst into tears at the sight of a runner out on the roads. How can I have a baby and maintain sanity throughout the process? I really would love to hear your thoughts about this, because I know how much you love running and hate being unable to do so to the best of your ability.

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  29. Gee...I had gone almost all day without having one of those moments until I read this! **SNIFF** Actually, there are definitely parts of their babyhood I don't miss - my son's especially - Mr. Colic! But I do miss they way they would curl up on my chest and go to sleep. Or smile at me with no teeth. But as I sat in mass this morning with 7th or 8th graders in front of me, I realized that my son is on the cusp of being a young man - already a moose physically at 5' and 120 lbs (age 10.5) and wearing MEN'S clothes! But in so many ways he is still a boy - still cuddling at night with the same stuffed puppy dog he's had since 4 months. And my daughter is 7.5 going on 17. She totally can't wait to be all that comes with being a teen, but also will come to me to tuck her in at night - always ready with hugs and kisses for mom and dad. I LOVE the age they are at most days. I think I do a better job now of appreciating them as they are now and not wishing away the time. Those first years of sleep deprivation made it hard not to wish it away. I seriously struggle to remember what I did with all that free time before I had kids! What will I do with it when they are gone?

    Your kids are beautiful - inside and out. I'm not sure I've ever really told my kids the story of their birth. I'll be sure to do that soon. No poop involved for one, but blew it up on the wall the 2nd time (post-birth in bathroom - NOT FUN).

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  30. This killed me. Totally the way I feel SO often.

    I try not to wish time away, but I do wish every day would go a little slower!

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  31. Yes. Every day. But, like you, I also try to remember that these years are short (hence the name of my blog) and to enjoy them while they're happening.

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  32. I would welcome boobs growing, the kid thing I struggle with! I was just thinking this morning as my (4yo) daughter was laying down on the couch "when did she get so big?". She still cuddles with me (thank God, as my 7yo really does not) and I remind myself to enjoy every minute.

    We can't stop'em from growing. Thanks for the reminder to enjoy where they are now.

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  33. My kids are named Emma and Sam too!! (Emma is the eldest at 13 and Sam, 9) We ate at that same deli at NY NY in March. I took a picture. I got the Italian Stallion though...

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  34. You made me cry, ya big jerk.

    My "baby" turns 21 this March and I miss her like crazy while she's off at college. My oldest just turned 22. They were quite possibly the cutest babies ever. (Although your Sam and Emma are pretty freakin' adorable, as well!) I would LOVE to go back for an hour or two and just stare at them and cuddle them and savor the moment. I love who they are but I desperately miss who they were, too.

    Damn...now I've made MYSELF cry. Must. Man. Up.

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  35. My daughter is 29 and married now, with one 2-year-old son. I tell her (probably too often) to cherish the time with him NOW, because he will grow up much too quickly. Great post--I don't want to go back OR ahead, I want to savor every moment of today!

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  36. I was just watching some videos from when my kids were toddlers (they're 5 and 7 now) and they have grown so much! So cute. When they were babies, I couldn't wait for them to be out of diapers, and I'm still glad I don't have to change poopy diapers, but I do miss holding them while they fell asleep.

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  37. My son is 19 and just moved back home again. I don't mind because although he is grown up, I feel better knowing he is safe at home when I wake up and see his car outside. You are right about not looking back or forward, every moment is great. They do grow up so fast!

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  38. I have so many kids that I have some that are littler and some that are more independent. We like the whole range. It makes an especially nice ensemble to fart on the round.

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  39. I'm 25 and I can't wait to have kids but I am definitely TERRIFIED I will kill them/scar them/screw them up.

    My mom loves to call me at 6:50 p.m. on my birthday and tell me how I looked up at her and she jokingly asked where this blue-eyed girl came from (my parents had brown eyes.) My eyes turned hazel after the initial baby blues. I don't get the gory details, but I hope she tells me when I get pregnant instead of the "it didn't hurt much" lies she feeds me.

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  40. My youngest turned 18 yesterday. They are all technically adults now. The time went too quickly.

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  41. I love some things about all the stages of development... which may explain why I kept having kids! They are pretty awesome... as is being a parent :)

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  42. I recently sold all of our baby crap: bassinet, bouncy chair, pack n play, swing, etc. I cried myself to sleep that night. I don't really want to go back to the blow out diapers, projectile spit up and sleeping in 3 hour increments, but it's hard to let go of the babies they once were.

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  43. My daughter is only 4 months old but it's already going by way too fast. She's getting so big. I swear I'm going to wake up one day and she'll be a teenager.

    I never thought I'd say it but I miss our middle of the night feeding sessions.

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  44. Love the age of my kids right now, 19 and 21. One's a designated driver and the other can buy my drinks! Just kidding. I love having adult kids--though sometimes the "adult" part hides in the background. That's ok, it's been a blast and sad watching them grow up right before my eyes. Enjoy your kids!!!! Time will fly!

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