It’s the shoes that get me. Every year around this time I take the kids out for new shoes. They get school shoes, gym shoes and “weekend” shoes. Every year I marvel at how giant their feet are. I mean, how can my baby wear shoes from the women’s department? It seems impossible. Don’t we all have to go home and share baths right after this?
Every year, on shoe day, I cry. I find old baby pictures to stare at, and snuggle up close to the box of clothes I just can not give away that I have hidden in the basement. I just hug the fleecy footed pjs and the first little Polo shirts. What is it about the clothes and shoes that bring home the rapid passage of time?
The funny thing is, I would never go back. As much as I loved having a house full of preschoolers and toddlers, I have hit my stride with a house full of tweens and teens. I LOVE this time of life, where our house vacillates between all-out screaming fights and laughter so loud and full of life that it travels down the block. It’s an emotional rollercoaster around here, almost minute by minute, but I love it all.
And yet, my heart can’t help but pine for those tiny breadloaf feet that I had to dress in tiny shoes every morning, and the little boys and little girl who spent long summer days in a kiddie pool, or covered in homemade playdoh. The same ones who loved to snuggle right into my side and watch Super Why on the couch after a long day of play.
I miss those babies sometimes, even if I love the big kids they have become. I miss my role as their mom even more. It’s hard when the result of doing your job well is that you put your own self out of work. I know they’ll always need me in some ways, but every year, as their feet grow, they need me less and less and that is something I just don’t think I’ll ever get used to. I miss those babies and I miss my job as their mom even more.
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