This past weekend we took advantage of IHOP’s kids eat free promotion. This isn’t exactly newsworthy anymore. Buzz was climbing every which way, Abby threw crayons, it was chaos multiplied. Same story, different restaurant.
A few minutes after we were seated, a family with a newborn baby girl took the booth behind us. I admit, she was cute. So tiny in her infant carrier. A pink bow atop the little hair that she had. When their food arrived, I heard her make a few small cries right on cue. Her father immediately picked her up, to eat one-handed.
I looked over at her and I flashed back to my babies. I wondered if she slept through the night, if she was laughing yet, the theme of her nursery. I wanted to tell them that there are hard days and you may cry a lot and you might want to scream, but then tomorrow shines. But don’t live for tomorrow, make sure your child knows how much you love her today. That watching your baby grow into the kid that they’ll become is one of the greatest privileges of life. To dream about the future, but enjoy her when she’s that little and dependent because it doesn’t last long enough.
Instead, I stopped Buzz from dumping out the salt shaker and fed Abby a bite of macaroni and cheese while attempting to answer one of Jedi’s neverending questions.
My baby days are done. It was an easy decision to say enough. But every once in awhile, when faced with the reality that they only get bigger from here on out, I can’t help but feel a bit sad and sentimental.