“Where has the time gone?”
Thanks to Facebook, we now get little reminders of snippets of our lives we posted one or more years ago. We can even share those reminders with our friends and family. So now, on the news feed, I consistently see the same saying over and over: “Where has the time gone?” Often it’s about our children. How can they grow up so quickly?
How can they all of a sudden go from those toothless, helpless, and adorable babies to independent and unique people?
I also hear about this when I go out in public solo with my three children, who are now 6, 4, and 10 months old. I often get comments and advice from strangers.
The biggest piece of advice I get is: “Cherish this time when your children are little! They will be grown up before you know it!”
They tell me about how much they loved that time in their life when their children were young and needy. How they felt like it was going to last forever and their children would never be able to do for themselves. And then, just like that, their children are grown and off living their own lives.
My grandpa also reminds me that his favorite time in his life was when his two children were very young. He loved holding them, playing with them, and watching them play (and fight!) with each other. He loved putting them to sleep and waking up in the morning with them there.
They were always there. And then, all of a sudden, they were not.
It is tough, when your children are very young, to truly cherish every single moment. It’s nearly impossible. The daily grind and needs of everyone in the family are high! Making a conscious effort to be present and in the moment can be difficult some days. But it can make all the difference in the world. Just pause and take a deep breath in. Look around the room. Look at your children. Look at their faces, their arms, fingers, legs, and toes. Listen to their tiny voices.
This is the smallest your children will ever be.
My 6-year-old won’t always be excited about every knock-knock joke he hears (or makes up) or want to play board games with me all Friday afternoon. My 4-year-old won’t always want to constantly ask me questions and play dinosaurs and pirates and alligators. My 10-month-old won’t always use me as her home base when she’s exploring her world. She won’t always wake up for comfort in the middle of the night either. Life will change. This season will change.
“The days are long but the years are short.”
So the next time I get ahead of myself, I will remind myself to be here. I will sniff my baby’s head an extra time. I will answer my 4-year-old’s 8th “why” question in a row. And I will hug and kiss my 6-year-old when I pick him up from school.
I love the present, but I’m excited about the future and to watch these amazing little beings become who they are. One day, many years from now (and probably even next year!), I will look back and say, “Where has the time gone?” But I will also know that I was and am so blessed to have this time. This time. Right. Now.
Professional photo by Blueberi Photography in Sarasota.