Every single solitary year I start to feel this way about this time.
It is the time of year when it is shoved right in my face that my children are getting bigger. Older.
It is when I have an overwhelming feeling that I am missing out. Even though I really am not, I mean I am with my children every single day. I participate in their daily lives. I watch them, I laugh with them, I nurture them, I cuddle them, I tickle them, I LOVE them, I miss them while we are apart. I mean, I could go on and on.
This time of year is when it hits me ... my children are going to be turning another year older very soon and then very soon after that they will promote to another, higher grade in school.
This is very hard for a mama to adjust to. I beg them every.single.night of my life to please not grow up anymore...but they still do! Every night when I put them to sleep I tell them that I don't want them waking up taller and another day older. I tell them to PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE stay just like they are...but it hasn't worked just yet.
Kobe will turn 11 soon. That is really a hard thing to wrap my mind around. I have known him for 11 years. It seems like just yesterday and it literally breaks this mama's heart to think of him not being my "mama's boy" in the hard years that are so quickly approaching. What's even harder is the fact that my "baby boy" is within mere months of his last day of elementary school. Which means, he will be going to middle school in August. I am sorry, I am sentimental. I am that mother. I long for him to always be little and just stay with me forever... He says he will...but I have a feeling that his plans may change!
Samuel will be 6 soon. There is no way that can be right! He was born yesterday! Seriously?! SIX years old. He is such a very, very special part of my life and holds the key to a very special place in my heart. He will be going to 1st grade. Kindergarten changes everything. Why do they have to grow up and go to Kindergarten? After that, there is no stopping this terrible thing known as time. It goes way too fast.
I am making conscious decisions to spend more, quality time with them. As.much.as.possible. I know these days are honestly far and few between. I mean, today is the only day in the history of America that these babies will be this very age. And while that saddens my heart... it makes me aware. Aware that I have to make an intentional effort to be the *best* mama I can be to them. Every day. I don't get to take that day off...because...it will NEVER come again.
I really try to do fun things with them and make good memories with them so that when they are older they will look back on things with a smile and a fondness for their childhood. I try and put lotion on every morning and every night. This may seem like a weird thing to include here but I can smell a certain smell and it immediately makes me think of how my granny Doris smelled or how my own mom smelled growing up. I want that for them. When they catch just a slight smell of a certain fragrance I want them to remember...well, me.
I include them. They are important. I value them and their opinions. I mess up. I apologize. I argue with their daddy (all married couples do it!) and I let them see us make up. I let them think they have caught us hugging or kissing. I smile and wink at them. I walk by and my tickle meter goes off because their tickle tanks are empty and I fill them back up with...well, tickles.
I watch Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2 and Air Buddies with Samuel (1000+ times) and laugh when he does or act surprised when he tells me something is about to happen (even though I probably just watched like yesterday). I keep his favorite snacks in a little bucket in the bottom cabinet that he can reach and his favorite juice boxes on the door of the fridge so he can get them easily. I clap like I am insane if he does ANYTHING and cry like a baby when he sings or speaks in a play or program at church or school.
I try to make an effort to be an intentional listener when Kobe comes into the bathroom every.single.morning to talk to me while I put on my makeup. He tells me all kinds of things. I hear a lot of people say that they learn the most during the drive home from school...that time is important for sure...but I seem to learn the most while applying my face each morning! I discipline him when he does things so that he know I love him with all of my heart and only want him to grow up to be the BEST person he can possibly be.
I pray over my children, with my children, for my children. I ask protection over them every.single.day of my life. I teach them that when they are afraid they can go to their Heavenly Father who can do more for them than even I can. I tell them that though it may seem hard to understand, HE loves them even more than I do! I mean, sit and think on that for just a second... how much you absolutely love and adore your children...our Heavenly Father loves us more than that! Oh wow! I have preached myself happy here!
I hold their little (and growing) hands. I rub their backs and in Kobe's case...his arm. I wipe their tears. I tell them to be tough when they need to hear it. I teach them to stand up for themselves and the "least of these". I teach them to have compassion. To do the right thing..even though it is often times the HARDEST thing to do.
I tell them that as of right now their only job in America is to be a good son, a good student, and a good friend. I tell them that my wish for them is that they grow up to love Jesus even more, go to college, get a good education, get a job they love, be able to support themselves and help others, find a wife they love, and be good upstanding citizens of America.
I tuck notes in their pockets. In their snack bags, in the sack lunches. I leaves little surprise packages all over the house when I am away for the night just so they know that I am most definitely thinking of them while I am not with them. I call them. I text them. I Face Book
I literally love these boys so much that it makes my heart feel like it could burst. I just love seeing what great kids the Lord decided to bless me with. Me. A woman who feels so unworthy to be their mama. A woman who feels so grateful that I am.
Time is definitely running away from me. It makes my heart ache, my eyes sting, and my throat get a lump in it. But, for now, they are only this very age once and I will enjoy it... I sure hope they enjoy and love me as much as I do them!