Sunday, 19 February 2017

Babies Grow on You

Our littlest one has now got to that stage where he is constantly moving, pulling, grabbing and reaching.
I have to keep reminding myself that everything kids do is just a phase as it can be seriously tiring having your hair pulled constantly and being used like a human climbing frame.
My mum looked over at me the other day while little E was attempting to use my ribs as some sort of stepladder and said "Babies grow on you"
I was slightly confused before she explained that she meant literally.
I've been thinking about it since then; how we don't just grow these small humans for nine months but really their whole lives.
After they're born we nourish them, our bodies are their warmth and their security;
our arms become their cushions, our tummies their resting places.
Our knees become their first seat and our fingers their first relief when teething hits.
As they get stronger, so do we; our strength increasing as they do.
We hold them up and strengthen little legs; limbs grow against our own.
The baby rolls turn into muscle, and we become their own playground.
Hips are for straddling, backs are for piggy back rides, necks are for hanging off.
Dad's shoulders are their best view of the world, and the best place to rest their heads.

We carry them for comfort, for learning, for seeing, for security. To let them know we are near until they are ready to move away.
We grow their faith in humanity and nurture trust.
Then one day we put them down and don't pick them up again, How weird is that?
But we'll still be there, helping them to grow, wiping away tears, giving pep talks, reminding them that they are amazing and smart and funny and clever.
We'll nag them and push them to be the best version of themselves,
we'll argue and disagree to give them strength of conviction and the ability to make decisions,
and we'll still always, always and always give hugs.
In those same arms that first held them in those tiny days, when they were just starting to grow.
So on days where I'm feeling weary and counting the hours until bedtime I try to remember how fleeting this time is,
how these moments count for so much and how I know I wouldn't want to be doing anything else...


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