So I have this tween daughter and she’s wonderful. Really, she is.
She’s also taken to some mood swings and eye rolls now and then which my mother often watches with a smirk. I know what you’re thinking, Mom . . .
I want so desperately for my girl to be little again I can’t even stand it.
I remember when she was two years old – those long days that made up a very short year. That wispy, blonde hair coupled with piercing blue eyes. Those giggles. Those bunnies she carried around everywhere.
I lived for nap time because I was pregnant again. I waddled through exhaustion like I was running through three feet of snow every single moment. I thanked God for “Jack’s Big Music Show” so I could sit down. I went to Chick-Fil-A so she could burn-off energy and I could talk to adults. We had just-before bed snuggles with damp hair smelling of baby shampoo.
I loved that time and despised it at the same time. I had no idea being a mother was so much work.
These days, I get more sleep. I’m almost embarrassed to tell you I usually sleep until 9 a.m. on the weekends – sometimes later.
These days, I can reason with my three kids and they’re a whole lot of fun – usually. No one in our family is always fun.
These days, we don’t go to the playroom at Chick-Fil-A anymore.
These days, we don’t use baby shampoo and I don’t think “Jack’s Big Music Show” is even on anymore.
I wish I would have known it was going to be our last Chick-Fil-A playdate. I wish I had known when the clean scent of baby shampoo would cease it’s linger through our home. I wish I would have known it was going to be the last nap, the last innocent belly-laugh while watching Caillou, the last time playing with the train set.
I took for granted the mundane blessings would still be there in the morning but one morning, I woke up and a new set of mundane blessings greeted me instead.
These days are great days, too. I know someday I’ll look back on them and feel the same bittersweet tug I feel now when I look back on those days.
And it’s cliche to say and the classic lament of motherhood but . . .
It’s all going way too fast.
In eight years, my daughter will leave our nest. I already see little pieces of her leaving us because this is how it’s supposed to be – a gradual sprouting of wings. I get it.
I don’t like it. But I get it.
The definition of halcyon is “a period of time in the past that was idyllically happy and peaceful.”
There are parts that aren’t happy. It’s not always peaceful.
But as a whole . . . These are the halcyon years. The years we’ll remember with an aching fondness and a sharp desire to return to how it once was.
And for heaven’s sakes, I’m not trying to be nauseating. I still have ridiculous amounts of laundry and kids who fail to hear me the first time and dog poop tracked through my kitchen on careless shoes and illogical arguments at bedtime to referee.
I still sometimes lose my stuff. I still fall into bed at the end of the day, exhausted. I still have a short-circuited brain that I’ve accepted won’t ever return to how it once was.
But if we only look at those parts and forget to see the beauty in the whole, we’re missing the halcyon.
I so often miss the halycon.
I’m missing being here as much but as I’m writing this new Bible study, I can’t drink-up these years if I do it all. Something has to give.
I’m so thankful for those who still read this small space. It will return with more regularity someday.
In the meantime, let’s just bask in the halcyon days because . . . they’ll be over soon.
Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. – Psalm 90:12