I'll admit it, I'm a bit of a sentimental fool. I really can't help it, but I think it gives me the ability to look back, appreciate (in hind-sight, oftentimes), and have more insight and love for today.
Today I pulled out the ol' videos of my babies as actual babies (and toddlers) and watched them with my little loves and a friend (and then with my sweetie tonight). It's such an interesting process being a mother. Watching as a tiny human being grows in your belly, then in your arms and at your breast, and then slowly moves farther and farther away. It's really an unfolding of an adult woman. Somebody who starts the journey of motherhood as a child herself (no matter the age) and then learns to love so deeply while at the same time learning to let go of that which she loves more than life itself. I have to say, watching videos of my babies and going through photos of them, is a bit of a remembering process and also a grieving process. Looking up and seeing a beautiful child in front of me, and looking down and seeing the small person that will never be again (along with their chubby cheeks, babbling, sweet lisps, soft downy hair, and sweet little person smell). Letting go of that baby is a bit hard. As a mama we have spent so much time adoring, smelling, watching, holding, and admiring such a little soul. It is painful to fall in love with that person, as they are, and then let go... so we can fall in love with a whole new version of themself (and learn to let go once again).
Being Mama is such a complex role. It's beautiful, hard, soft, ugly, sweet, frustrating, loving, adoring, painful, joyful. We adore our children so completely, sometimes it really does hurt. In a good way.
There are moments in their childhood where I really wish I could have frozen time. I've come to the solution of taking life a little slower. Spend time doing just nothing with them. Because it is so beautiful to just watch them, as they are, right now. Try to have a near constant mental mantra of "I see this child, I love this child, and I am here with this child right now." It is in no way possible for it to be constant, but sometimes we get so caught up in life's little dramas that whole days will pass without those sorts of thoughts. I want them, every day. I want to store every little memory of them that I possibly can, so when they are no longer small cherubs I can sit quietly in a corner and adore those memories, and share them again and again.
I am thankful for small reminders to breathe and look around. So very, very thankful.