Bye, Bye, Baby

I don’t have a baby in my home. We’ve gotten used to babies. Nine and a half years of babies. When Lauren was still a baby, Rachel was born. While Rachel was still a baby, Caleb was born. And on and on, down the line. Now, Griffin is almost 2. Almost 2. He’s walking and trying to talk. He’s not a baby. He’s a toddler. He’s my only one in diapers, the only one who needs his food cut up in tiny bites. But he’s not a baby.

Griffin doesn’t need sweet, tiny baby clothes that you use the special laundry soap for. We’ve just boxed those up.

He doesn’t need that cute little baby seat that is also a portable bassinet. The one with tiny Winnie the Poohs all over it that wobble when it vibrates. We’re giving that away.

The receiving blankets and booties and stretchy knit caps. All boxed up to be given away. The breast pump and attachments will go on ebay. All those little rattles and floor gyms and fun activity blankets are going to Goodwill or the Caring Pregnancy Center or my friend who’s having a baby.

We folded up our high chair yesterday. Griffin sat at the big table in a booster seat, joining the rest of the family in an unbroken, tight circle. I cried. It’s quite something to see all of our family sitting around the same table, knowing that tight circle is complete now. Our olive branches winding around our table, I thought as I watched them find their places and sit down. And I cried because I will miss the high chair and all it represents.

I will miss the double stroller and having two in diapers. I’ll even miss the burp cloths. I will miss the cute Mickey Mouse slippers that fit on teeny-tiny feet. And I’ll miss the bassinet attachment for the Pack ‘N Play. The bouncy seats and infant car seat and traveling with all your own miniature furniture that one little person amazingly requires. I’ll miss all that.

We’re moving on to the next season in our lives. A season of toddlers and big kids, of learning to talk and learning to tie your shoe and learning to wipe yourself on the potty. A season of riding two-wheelers and going to school and playing soccer. A season of everyone walking and only taking one tiny umbrella stroller for when little feet get tired. A season of having only two children home during the mornings, of a quieter and emptier home.

It is right, and I know God has brought us to this season of life. But this new life of mine does feel strange, unfamiliar, like a jacket I need to grow into. I sure will miss all the baby stuff and the hope they held for the next baby, the one we could be expecting at any moment. There will be no more babies, no more maternity clothes, no more wandering if I’ll be holding a newborn at this time next year. We are a complete circle now, the eight of us, a perfect snug fit around our table.

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9 Comments

Filed under Family, life, motherhood, parenting, pregnancy, thoughts

9 responses to “Bye, Bye, Baby

  1. sweet sorrow…

    my kids are 13 and 9. the wife and I are just getting some of our life back. we never longed for it or missed it when we were in the “thick” of it, but it’s nice to see it again. we have been parents almost as long as we have been married. our children have been a blessing, but there is a bit of joy out there in ourselves.

    continue to soak up the love shared between you and those kids that count on you so much, but get ready to experience something that you deserve just as much…

    you

  2. The 2 Witches

    My girls are 12 and 7. I would’ve loved to have had more children but I needed a hysterectomy before we were “done”.

    I look forward one day to being a grandmother but until then no diapers no bottles no binkies no babies. 😦

    Mama Kelly

  3. The 2 Witches, I would also have loved more children. We were gladly taking them as God gave them to us. πŸ™‚ But God decided we were finished after 6; I had to have a hysterectomy in January.

    Charlie, thanks for your comments. For the most part, I am trying to focus on the positives; but I have allowed myself moments of grief. I know there will be good things about this new season. Thanks.

  4. I have loved every stage my guys have been in…and loved every time they have moved into a new one. It’s so hard to let go and watch them grow up but at the same time it’s so incredibly exciting to see them emerge into young men. Treasure it all…

  5. My baby just turned two, and it does feel rather sad not to have a baby in our household. Thankfully, we want and, as far as we know, are able to have more children so perhaps God will bless our lives with another baby next year.

    I have something for you at my blog.

  6. That “jacket doesn’t fit” stage is quite strange, isn’t it?

    That applies in so many different ways to differing lives, differing times. I feel it myself right now –

    Yes, it is good to grieve, then good to go on. Still lots of people to love. Here’s a hug, though, anyway!

  7. I am wondering if I have seen the last of all these things… I am ready and rearing to go for more, and hubby says… “I can’t imagine anymore, can you?” “uh… yeah πŸ™‚ )

  8. Renee, someone saw my face as I held my brand-new niece at a family reunion last weekend and said with surprise, “You want another one, don’t you?” She knows I can’t have another one (I’d just had that conversation with her), and she was obviously surprised to think that I’d really want more than 6 children. πŸ™‚

  9. Holly, thanks. πŸ™‚ Yeah, we keep moving on. Still lots of little people to love and teach and hug and be busy with. Still lots of life going on around here. And we’re moving into this new phase of life, so it’s exciting. Just different.

    I think I’m just surprised when those emotions hit me full-force or even when they slowly settle on me like a heavy coat.

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