I sit with piles of laundry around me. I glance over and see my toddler licking spilled Kool-Aid off the floor. I smell the sweetness of my oldest’ shampoo lingering from her shower. I hear the chatter of my son as he talks to himself while playing football on his tablet.
This is the moment I realize none of these kids are babies. This is the moment my heart broke. This is the moment I find myself wondering, where did the babies go?
I spent a good part of my 20s pregnant, preparing for a baby, birthing a baby or taking care of a baby. The third and final of the babies was born just before I turned 29. She turned 3 in September. When the big kids were each 3, I was pregnant. We were preparing for another baby. Except now, there will be no more babies. Sure, I would be over the moon if God surprised us with another baby, but I think I’m finally content with these 3 babies. Even if they’re not babies anymore.
But I feel lost, what do I do now? How do I raise these big kids? How do I turn off the part of me that has been the momma of a baby for 11 years?
Obviously, Madison is 11. I’ve been “raising big kids” for 8 years or so. The problem is there isn’t (and won’t be) a little when the big transitions from that toddler into preschool stage.
The moments of Lydia being a baby are gone, and these toddler moments are fleeting. Each day, she knows more than she did yesterday. Tomorrow she will be braver than she was today. But I’m thankful for another day she let me rock her to sleep, since I know tomorrow I might not be so lucky.