During my childless days I would often hear mothers say, when looking at a newborn or infant, “I wish they would stay that little forever.”
I used to think, “What? Are you some sort of masochist?”
Today the snickerdoodle woke up happy and cooing, and as I went to collect her happy baby self, I could hear the older doodles in the living room. The conversation sounded like this:
M: Leave me ALONE!
m: I’m trying to play wif my PONIES! Leave me ALONE!
C: uh-UH! uh-UH!
M: Mama! Help!
For just a brief minute I found myself looking at this little bundle of hugs and smiling cuteness and thinking, “I wish you could stay . . .”
Because she’s the easiest she’s ever going to be right now.
The easiest and the hardest. The most delightful and the most exhausting.
When the doodles are teens they will be the easiest and the hardest, the most delightful and the most exhausting. Each stage is wonderful and challenging and delightful and disgusting and I want to live through them all, in the moment, without wishing myself back to the past, or ahead to the next place.
So I don’t wish.
Most of the time.