Well, it is official - I no longer have a toddler and a child. I simply have two children. My son turned 3. Life is really different without a baby or toddler. As I mentioned in a previous post, my husband was eager to ditch all things ‘baby’ and we recently took a trip where I did not pack diapers. Or bottles. Or even bring a stroller. It was a very different trip! Almost reminded me of a pre-kid trip. *Almost*.
I always find it interesting when a child has a birthday - I am not sure it is simply because growth is on the mind, or because there is a sort of switch that gets flicked on at the exact time of when they entered this world - but wow, has my son changed these past couple of weeks. Saying new things. Doing new things. Seems like he grew 3 inches in the past week. (Turns out he grew 2” since his 2.5 visit - wow!)
I hate to be so self-centered on the birthdays of my children - but hey - I did bring them into this world! I get so emotional. I look at old pictures. I flip through their baby books as I enter new data. I simply can not believe that I was a part in creating these lives. Due to birthday over-gifting (thank you generous family!!), I sorted through some old toys to make room for all the new ones. Some of them were so baby-ish and it just really hit home on how big my kids are now. We easily eat out, we walk lots of places, and we chat - like have super long, fun conversations about all sorts of random stuff. I want to hang out with them and do stuff. My husband is a movie lover and has enjoyed taking them to the movies (and I get some me time - yay!). And with my daughter at school, my son and I have had some lunch dates, which are so nice - a little one on one time with my little guy. Luckily I get a few minutes a day of alone time with my daughter - walking her to school. She still holds my hand. And today, I saw a mom with two older daughters, maybe 2nd and 4th grade? And they were all holding hands. It brought a smile to my face and all I could think was, I hope we still hold hands at that age…. nothing connects me more than the physical connection of holding hands. I love that as soon as we get down the stoop and open the gate, my daughter is reaching for my hand. Even when we see her friends, she holds my hand. I know the day will come when she will drop it but for now I will hold on tight.
Erica has a MA in Early Childhood Education from New York University. She is currently a stay at home mom to a 4 year old pony loving ballerina and a 2 year old metrocard holding bus driver.
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