“The baby,” who isn’t actually a baby anymore and I guess I need to stop calling her that, crawled at 10 months.
Exactly 7 months later, she started walking. It also turns out that she’s quite the climber.
I am so relieved to have use of my arms again. So, so relieved. Picking her up and hauling her all over the place — because when you’re trying to walk into a store with an unpredictable three-year-old, you have to have the other one either strapped in a cart or on your hip — has given me unprecedented upper-body strength. I can do man push-ups. Okay, only like three. But STILL.
And while I am so excited to finally close the door on all things baby in this house, I admit that I’m also so sad about it. My last child has truly turned into a toddler overnight who drunkenly wanders the house saying “Bye-bye! Cracker?”
She sings, she laughs, and she is a complete and utter joy. Except when she’s trying to eat Cascade gel packs, or when she watches me lace up my shoes and unties one while I tie the other one, and then when I re-tie that one she unties the other one. I mean, it’s cute now that it’s over and I’m telling you about it, but when I’m in a hurry and I can’t get my damn shoes tied and Asher is standing by the door screaming “I DON’T WANT MY CLOTHESES TO TOUCH ME!” it’s not cute.
I’ll never have another baby-turned-toddler again. This is it, and I’m glad … but also there is a part of me that wishes I could make it stop. Just for a moment.
I’ll never again have the joy of seeing one of my children take their first steps. Now there will be new firsts, each one taking them farther away from babyhood. And to be honest, I’m relieved because this has been incredibly hard. But also, I need to have a good cry about it.
This is the beginning of goodbyes, and everything about it is bittersweet.