Being a writer is only one of many identities that color my life. Being a mother to two very active boys (8 and 5) is the one that takes most of my time.
Recently, my younger son showed me that he now knows how to buckle himself into his car seat. He was so proud to be able to do this. I was proud and glad - one less thing for me to do when we are trying to get on the road. Then I realized something. When I buckle him in, I have to reach across his lap and in the process, before I go to my seat, I always give him a kiss. Now that opportunity is gone. I have one less kiss with him during the day.
Each step forward that we celebrate with our children is also a step away from us and comes, for mothers, with a drop of sadness.
I remember when my sons started to sit up and hold their own bottles. I thought - whew, a little more flexibility for me in my days. And then I thought - no more holding them for that moment. Don't get me wrong. I'm glad to be out of the helpless bottles-burping-bib stage where you have to be on alert for all their waking moments, but their independence means less dependence on what I have for them. I am thrilled for his accomplishments, but miss some of the things I used to do for and with him.
So I cheer for my son every time I hear the seatbelt click.
And I'm on the lookout for ways to sneak in an extra kiss or two.
May you notice the many moments of joy children bring to your life,