I’m sitting here looking at the aftermath of my girls’ second birthday party, watching my big toddlers run around and laugh.
But if I close my eyes, I’m at the hospital seeing them for the first time. I’m looking down at a tiny newborn hand gripping my finger. I’m watching them learn to roll over, pull up and start crawling. I’m holding out my hands to catch them as they take their first steps. I’m lost on Pinterest looking for first birthday ideas and then watching them smash their first little birthday cake with the duck on it.
And it all seems like yesterday. Or the night before last. Or a week ago. Anything but the two years which have really passed.
I always thought it was a cliché thing when parents said, “It goes by SO fast,” but now that I’m living it, I realize it isn’t cliché at all. It’s reality, and it’s amazing and yet bittersweet.
I have a theory why it goes so fast. Nothing scientific–just a few thoughts which have been rolling around in my brain after every conversation I’ve had with a friend which has included the phrase, “It goes by so fast.” (Which seems to be almost every conversation I’ve had with my mom friends since the girls’ birthday has been on the horizon).
My little theory is as follows: We adults are living in our slow motion world in which nothing happens quickly. High school takes four years to complete; college takes another four years (if you’re lucky!). Planning a wedding takes months if not a year. And Lord knows pregnancy is an eternity in and of itself!
Meanwhile, children are newborns for only a few weeks. Then they’re smiling and noticing the world around them, and a few weeks later they start to roll over. They are on a milk-only diet for just a few months. They outgrow clothes and diapers every 2-3 months, and they crawl for a few weeks. Then they’re cruising, taking steps and then walking within another few months. The difference in a newborn and a one-year-old is drastic, and the rate at which children move from one stage to the next is amazing.
Then the second year comes along, and they learn new skills and words daily. Little mannerisms and favorite toys change weekly. Before long, they are running and speaking in sentences, singing their favorite songs and getting excited for their birthday party.
So when we adults living in our long-term world of waiting for months and months for things to change witness the daily and weekly changes in these little people we are raising, it’s startling, breath taking and flat out incredible how quickly it all seems to go. The adult world moves at a tortoise’s pace while our children grow at the hare’s pace. So yes, relatively speaking, it goes by SO fast!
I still love to stop and think about those tiny newborns, chubby infants and wobbly new walkers while saying a little prayer of thankfulness for my beautiful children and the joy which they bring into our home. I try not to close my eyes too long, though–I don’t want to miss a thing since it does, after all, go by so fast! (And because two-year-old twins are into EVERYTHING…eye closing is just asking for a disaster).
Here is the link to the original post: