I had the most precious, precious gift for a while. A fleeting season, seven years long...and certainly some of the sweetest days of my entire life.
And now it's over.
When my son was a few months old, we prayerfully decided I wouldn't sign a contract to teach the following year...and the adventure began. I was a (most-of-the-time) stay at home mom.
It. Was. The. Hardest. And. The. Sweetest. And. The. Best. Thing. I. Have. Ever. Done.
Those days are still so fresh in my mind. Trev and I read books, went to music class, did finger painting on his high chair tray, sang songs, made shadows with flashlights, and played with many a "cah," as he used to call them.
And then I got pregnant.
All of a sudden, his previously attentive mama was exhausted, desperate to find anything that sounded good to eat, and busy running back and forth to the doctor during a high-risk pregnancy. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Handy Manny became his new buddies...and, to be totally honest, my lifesavers on the hardest days.
Enter Liley, a little slice of Redemption Pie and a tremendous injection of joy into our family. Now there were two little ones, and for a while it seemed they'd both be little...tiny, and here at home with me.
But before I knew it, Trev was off to Kindergarten, and Liley and I had our time alone. And just like her brother, she went to music class, we read stories, ran errands, did puzzles, cooked together, and yes, kept up with our friends on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
But when I was at home with Liley, there were a few pieces of the puzzle that weren't factors for me when Trevor was a baby: An older sibling competing for time, Facebook, Twitter, blogging, and putting on a Bible event. I wanted to stay connected with friends and family, see what was going on with my mentors, and share my love for learning the Word and applying it to everyday life.
But, y'all, I wish--desperately wish, even--I would have back-burnered some of that.
Two weeks ago I packed two lunches and put BOTH of my children on a school bus bound for the elementary school they attend. My pre-school days with my babies at home? They are over. There was a little part of me that broke inside with a wave good-bye to the two little ones I thought would be little a little longer than reality allowed.
I know my time with my children isn't over...I get that. But a precious, PRECIOUS, can-never-get-it-back-again season in the life of our family IS. It is!!!
When you have something like 2,555 days at home with your little ones, it is really, really easy to Facebook it away. To Twitter it away. To Instagram it away. To blog it away. To TV it away. To Event-Plan it away. To CHECK OUT it away (Can I get a witness?)...
Believe me, I know.
But before you know it, you're down to 817 days left until the last one goes off to Kindergarten, and then 260 days, and then 49 days.
And then you're standing on the corner watching them drive away in a school bus while you're trying not to lose your stuff (that's the nicest way I know how to say that).
Be still with your babies today. As one who wishes I could today, plunk down on the floor and play with your children. Be purposeful. Be intentional. Put it all away and be totally, completely THERE. Because, sure, you may still have several hundred, or even a thousand days left before you kids are off.
But these days...
Will become this day.
And these days...
Will become this day.
They weren't kidding when they say it goes by quickly.
Make it count.