Lately, when I put Kyle to bed, I miss him like he’s gone away.
I kiss him, say “night-night,” and quickly slip out the door and close it behind me. And then I feel sad that I will not see him again until the morning.
I get into bed and I have the fierce desire to scoop him out of his crib and bring him to bed with me, to curl him up in the hollow of my body, to feel his smooth skin and smell his hair.
I yearn to be near him, but this feeling is different from the achey terror of the “heart walking around outside my body” feeling of having a child. I’m not sure what it is. I’m not sure why it has just started happening this way. I suspect that the feeling has descended upon me because he is growing up.
My baby is becoming a little boy.
He moves with such great speed as I never imagined when he was immobile and flailing. He learns a new word at least once a week (this morning: bubbles!). He cocks his head and smiles at me showing all of his 10 teeth, as if to say “I’m SO cute, Mommy, don’t you just want to squeeze me?”
And I do. I do squeeze him, as much as I can. I know that someday he won’t want me to. I know that day will come much faster than I expect it. But right now it feels far away. Just as I had trouble imagining Kyle as a toddler, I have even more trouble imagining him as a boy, a teenager, a young man. It’s too physically draining.
For now I will get my fix whenever I can. I will continue to snuggle with him, kiss him, gobble his fingers, pinch his three-roll thighs, inhale the smell of his hair, poke his belly, and hug him. I will try to keep the memory of those feelings safe and whole for later, when those moments are fewer and farther between.
This post was inspired by all the writing going on because of Her Bad Mother (badladies.blogspot.com)