Wednesday, August 13, 2014

I'm Trying Not to Blink

The other day a friend posted a photo of her daughter who is about to be a senior in high school. She drives, she grown, she's beautiful . . . and . . . she's no longer a cute little girl.  She commented that she blinked and her baby was all grown.

The picture of her daughter as a small child was precious, and I immediately looked at all three of my 'little ones', growing faster than I want to admit. But they are still small, for now. I can almost see their little bodies stretching out, pushing out baby teeth as the 'grown up' teeth fight to reach the air. They cry over things I might consider silly, but are uber important in their young lives. They fight with each other intensely, but play together with a synchronicity that no one else will approximate.

In the last few years they have not always been at the same schools. This year they will be. They will also have longer hours, more homework, more structure, possibly less in school creativity, They may feel more stressed, they may love every second of it. Either way though, it will be a change. I can already see the changes in their speech, vocabulary and mannerisms. Hormones seeping in, attitudes sometimes.

They bounce back and forth from saying things that offer glimpses of who they will be as older children and even as adults. Then they bounce right back to imaginative play that is so creative I want to blow up a magic bubble around them so the scene remains as I see it. All at once I want to grab my phone and record them playing, even fighting, or take a picture. But I don't want to disturb the vibe if they should see the camera and begin to act goofy. I also don't want to only see their lives through a lens. I want to be in it, on the floor, in the mud and dirt, and getting Otter Pops on me while we make sure the Slip 'n Slide is wet enough to sail across the lawn properly.

When there were no children (of my own) in my life, I clock watched at work, and wished time away until I could do the things I wanted to do. Once I had my triplets, there was so much to do, and still is, that I am rarely able to check a clock. And when I do, I am always surprised at how they day/week/month/season flew by.

It seems like only yesterday we were sleep deprived and terrified at all that needed to happen to care for our premature infant triplets. From holding them, smaller than the palm of our hands, to them being able to swim, ice skate, ride a horse, and shower alone . . . where has the time gone?

I hear them running in from playing with neighbor friends and making up rules to negotiate the play situation. I find toys in their room that no longer hold their interest. They learned what they needed to from them and moved on. I find clothing that is suddenly too small for them to wear any longer, I hold it to my face and breathe in the smallness of their
bodies when it enveloped them. I feel my heart well up, pushing tears into my eyes, puddles of memories trying to make room for new memories and reach the air.

I'm trying not to blink.

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