I Don’t Have a Baby Anymore…

My youngest is two, and suddenly, I don’t have a baby anymore.

Suddenly, I go places without bringing an extra diaper or getting the stroller out of the car because she wants to walk along beside me.

Suddenly, I no longer have a little person on my hip throughout the day but a mini shadow who echoes my every move.

Suddenly, she wants to play ‘babies’ and read books and sing songs and ride her tricycle and those little dimples are fading from the backs of her hands.

Suddenly, thirteen years of raising five babies has passed and I don’t have a baby anymore.

But, the truth is, I will NEVER FORGET.

I don’t have a baby anymore….

But I will never forget how my heart raced and mind wandered at the thrill of two little lines.

I will never forget preparing all the bitty baby clothes and newborn diapers and soft blankies just in time for a whole new person.

I will never forget loving someone I’d never met.

I don’t have a baby anymore…

But I will never forget the raw, beautiful moment a brand-new human straight from heaven came blinking against the light.

I will never forget as the world stood still and a squished-up cheese-covered squalling baby was plopped on my bare chest and I instantly fell in love.

I will never forget examining those tiny fingers and toes and dimples and a nose and falling a little more in love with every glimpse.

I don’t have a baby anymore…

But I will never forget lying next to a newborn that first night in the hospital and noticing those same movements I’d felt on the inside.

I will never forget introducing my kids to each new sibling and the magic of bringing a new baby home from the hospital.

I will never forget watching our family rejoice and adjust and find a new normal in the middle of that newborn chaos.

I don’t have a baby anymore…

But I will never forget marveling at that impossible smallness and wondering ‘how did this little person fit in there???’

I will never forget that newborn smell in the place just above their ears…mother nature’s way of letting me know this one’s mine.

I will never forget those gentle sighs and baby yawns and sleep smiles and smacking lips and itty-bitty sneezes and squawking noises while they sleep.

I don’t have a baby anymore…

But I will never forget celebrating every milestone…baths, smiles, sleeping through the night, laughs, teeth, rolling over.

I will never forget how natural it felt to have a baby snuggled on my chest or resting on my hip.

I will never forget those great big milk-filled gummy smiles while I nursed that seemed to say, “Oh, you’re here, too?!”

I don’t have a baby anymore and now every day brings something new…

I will never forget each toddler learning to walk or that first wiggly tooth or learning to ride a bike or pushing ‘Higher Mom!’ on the swings or cheering on the sidelines at soccer or celebrating that deep 3-point shot.

I will never forget laughing when my eight-year-old flips me off with his sticky hand from the prize box at school or dying at the hilarity of just about everything my five-year-old has to say or snuggling up all together on our gigantic couch watching movies.

I will never forget these late-night conversations with my teenager and watching him grow into a little more a man every day.

I don’t have a baby anymore and I know this time with bigger kids is fleeting, too…

One day my house will be quiet and I’ll call to hear about their college antics or new jobs or the girl he loves or her latest adventures or whatever those crazy grandkids are up to now.

One day I’ll be SO EXCITED to have everyone home under one roof for holidays.

One day I’ll smile and nod and remember…that happened here once too.

I don’t have a baby anymore…

And, suddenly, for the first time it’s okay…because I know I will NEVER FORGET.

These blessed, beautiful moments with my babies are never gone, never lost, never forgotten.

These moments with my babies are MINE.

My Story.

Our Family Story…pressed into my heart forever.

I will remember them always.

I’m so incredibly grateful for every single moment of it all.

And no matter how big they grow or how old I get…until my dying day…they will always, always be my babies.


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