Sunday, June 14, 2009

What's Next

Today marks two months since we lost my 12-year-old niece, Elizabeth. It is also my daughter's 6th birthday. It's a good thing that life, just the plain old gift of living, is such a distraction.

The last week has been full, so very full, of things: the end of a school year, a very much practiced for and anticipated dance recital, and a little girl's birthday party. It's been tiring. My kitchen cupboards have been wall papered with Post-It notes for days, directing me where to go. It's been quite fulfilling pulling each note down as I accomplish the penciled in tasks, one by one. Within the chaos, I have been reflecting on the fact that I now have a first and a third grader.

I swear it was only the other day that I was tracing the circumference my swollen belly, feeling for toes and elbows, anticipating labor pains. Watching the endless stream of infomercials while nursing and comforting a restless 3 month old. Feeling like the sun was shining only for me when I heard my daughters say their first sentence, sing their first song. Losing sleep over choosing preschools and how to get my child to eat their vegetables. Knowing I am responsible for this.

It's not that I don't know they still need me. I'm still the mom, after all. The Momma. They are still little--just don't tell them. They are just not really little anymore. That's what getting me right now. The watching of my i-pod wearing, flip flop flopping, sleepover wanting, little "I can DO it!"s become people--real little people, with their own little personalities, opinions, problems, questions, answers, sorrows and joys. Sometimes they teach me stuff. Once in a while, I can see that they have actually been listening to me all along too. That stuff is sinking in. For all of us. I am finding it a wonder and comfort that each stage is most definitely preparing us for the next.

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