Friday, September 11, 2009

Ahhh, they're asleep.....

I love watching my children as they sleep. They are so serene, so peaceful. I place my hand on their faces and arms and I long for the days when I held their little bodies. Their warm baby breathing, the feel of their chests rising and falling in my arms reassured me that they were alive--that I really was a mother.

Now I can no longer cradle them the way I did. Oh, but I try. Their long, bony arms and legs poke me and prod me, but as soon as it's begun, it's over. They're off to play or ride scooters, anything but be with mom.

When they were toddlers, I was sure my twins would always need me. I scooped them up when they fell; every wail, "Mommmmmeeeeeee" was always followed by me hovering with my hands outstretched and back hunched over making sure they didn't fall into anything or break anything. It was like triage. Who was in the most danger? One twin would hopefully not get hurt while I tended to the other. I yearned for a break, screamed for it. "When will this ever end?!?"

It did. Their wiggly toddler bodies that I used to prop up on both hips like saddle bags, grew up.

It occurs to me now, as I marvel at the changes in their sleeping faces, that I can't scoop them up anymore. I can't carry them, and the break I desperately wanted is bittersweet. Sometimes I crawl in bed with each one. I get close to feel their breathing, to remember that luscious, baby cuddle. It's like that book, I Love You Forever. I will hold them close as much as I can for as long as I can, all the while knowing one day too, this will end. Hug those babies, people.


Good Enough Mom said...

I wonder if the theme of growth just comes up around the start of a new school year. I wonder this because my husband and I BOTH dreamed a similar dream in the past week. In my dream, I was an old woman and was looking at photos of my children as babies. I was crying longingly to hold them as babies, saying to my husband "it's over, it's over." I woke up in tears. I told my husband the dream, and he said "don't worry, we still have them." Then, a few days later, he had the same kind of dream of being older and yearning for our children's small bodies...and he also woke up with tears in his eyes. I guess this is the trap of parenthood (at least for me)...yearning for the babies to be more independent so you can get your freedom back, but then, once you're free, wishing to have the tiny, dependent babies back, who are now grown. Oy. Your post hits home.

Mommy Words said...

Oh this is going to make me cry. They are still your beautiful babies - even if they don't think so anymore!