Freeze Frame

Freeze Frame

I cleaned my daughter’s closet tonight. She’ll be 2 in December but has already outgrown her 2T and is on to bigger and better clothes. My son is not yet 4 and wears 5/6.

Maybe only a parent will understand this but I think anyone who has ever realized just how FAST time goes will know what I mean when I say that I was a little embarrassed as I packed her clothes with tears in my eyes and realized that she would never again wear some of my favorite clothes. They were packed, labeled, and put into a closet and with them went her second year of life.

The shirt she wore that said, “I’m the birthday girl” was packed, and along with it, her first birthday.

The outfit she wore to the zoo for the first time. Packed.

And with each item that went into the bag, a little piece of my heart went with it. Because the second year of her life is almost gone, and I wanted so much to just freeze time and make her and her brother stay small, in my arms, under my watchful eye, with my protection and covering.

I do wish it sometimes—that I could freeze time. But I can’t and truthfully, I probably wouldn’t even if I could.

To stop their growth would be so selfish of me because I would be robbing them of all the amazing things the future holds. The first day of school, the first date, the first kiss, the first love and the depth of the first heartbreak. They would be safe in my arms but they would miss the beauty of their wedding day and the exquisiteness of the births of their children.

No. As much as it pains me to see them hurt, I know that with the hurt comes growth so I will step back and allow time to take its course and while I have them, I will do my best to prepare them for the world they will someday face. I’ll teach them how to love, how to live and how to laugh. I’ll teach them how to work hard and how to rest deeply.

In the meantime, I’ll let them crawl in my bed in the middle of the night. I’ll let sticky hands hug me, no matter what I’m wearing. I’ll spend as much time with them in the current stage that I can and I’ll mark the time with memories (and lots of pictures) knowing that the day will come when my arms will ache to hold my babies again but my heart will soar over the amazing people they are becoming.

— Lisa Vallejos

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