That phrase popped up for me in various places at various times before I had children, and I always felt something powerful behind it. There's something sort of gritty and exhausting and breathtakingly amazing about that time in life…."when the babies were little". I think I heard it first in a movie. An older woman was recalling that time in her life like she was a war hero. I remember feeling an intensity I couldn't put my finger on. I remember thinking there was this club of people who knew what was hidden in that phrase and new it well while the rest of us just thought they were being nostalgic.
Now I know. Now, I'm in the club.
See, my babies are still little. There's no "back when" for me yet. Although, I've caught tiny glimpses of what it's like to not have to constantly change diapers, breastfeed, or be pregnant. I've caught glimpses of what some might call a certain kind of freedom. At the same time, I still feel very much in the trenches.
Many an article has been written about the nature of parenting little ones. Nothing I say here is new. It's just my interpretation. Often my interpretation leans towards the dirty laundry side of life. I write with an honesty that I can't seem to get away from. It is what it is. But underneath the piles of dirty laundry lies a world of hysterical conversations, hidden moments, and intense emotions. There are times of great triumph and success and times of such miserable failure you feel you may never recover. Saying "when the babies were little" is like referencing an event so life altering you feel somewhat astonished you came through the other side. Astonished, impressed, grateful, and so in love you can't see straight.
I know that this time in my life is short. I know that with every milestone and every rough patch I am changed. I know that there is so very much more to come. But for now, while the babies are little, I know that being in the trenches of motherhood is all I've ever been meant to do.
I once wrote this post called "One is One….Two is Ten". When speaking to my cousin about life with three kids she referenced that post and said with a hearty laugh, "if that's the case, then three is a zoo!".
My oldest may be in school now, and my baby won't technically be the baby anymore come August. But, my babies are still little, and I will hold onto that with a fierceness until I am good and ready to say they aren't.
Here's to a new year friends and the overwhelming excitement of a new little one on the way. Oh and yes. This time I am in fact pregnant!
For those wondering where I went for two months all I can say is that December was an intentional hiatus and January was spent trying to navigate the first trimester with two children. This is no easy task. But, talking to them about the soon to be fifth member of our family more than makes up for how hard it is to stay awake. Thank you for continuing to read and for asking where I've been.