It's occurring to me, with each milestone of Mommydum, that I live in the moment. Really, it's just almost impossible not to. Keeping up with the day-to-day goings on and trying to stay on top of the business of growing children leaves little time (or energy) for retrospection or future mapping. Of course, I have the obligatory baby books, which I cram full of artwork, well-check updates and class pictures. I also dutifully contribute to the college savings fund; (or as in my half Lebanese daughters case, the 'Eyebrow Waxing Fund', whichever proves most beneficial at her eighteenth birthday). But still, I have this gnawing feeling that I'm forgetting the here and now, even as I am experiencing it.
There's always a trace of truth in sayings that have become commonplace. Things like, Don't look a gift horse in the mouth or They grow up so fast. Sometimes they don't impact you until you hear them in just the right context or time in your life.
When my first was still in infancy, I would mentally roll my eyes each time I heard it. Surely they had no idea what I was going through, I thought. The long sleepless nights, the frustration and constant search for the perfect soothing method, the seemingly endless days of diaper changes and spit-up stains. Time was definitely not zipping by, in fact, it had slowed to a snails pace with each day oozing into the next.
As a mother of toddlers, I became accustomed to hearing the words, "Kids these days" or some variation of it....."I don't remember you acting that way".....blah blah blah. As if children today where completely unrelated creatures to those of us who grew up in the previous generation and time had mercurially leaped forward, leaving in its wake a generation of heathens. Did she truly not remember the endless bickering and constant whining? She said it so convincingly, I too began to wonder if it had at all happened.
But, as my three year old started his first day of preschool last week, wearing his 'big boy underwear' it dawned on me that time had indeed flown by. Gone are the days of diaper changing and bottle making. And in the blink of an eye, I am entering a new dimension. It's as if becoming a mom has somehow changed the very essence of time. It no longer follows any logical pattern. It's slippery in substance, bittersweet in taste.
I choose to look at it as Gods little party favor. As I turn to leave the 'Baby Party' that seemed as if it would never end; I am handed a neat little package. Its contents are the moments in time that defined an era, first smiles, words and walking. The editing room floor strewn with those frames that didn't make the cut. And my mind, trying in vain to grasp, the ever evolving definition of time.