No Longer a Tadpole
Kittens and frogs are so 2013. This year, my child’s big obsession is, well, just the frogs. I’m not sure if this shows a lack of imagination in a two-year-old, or just focus. Yeah, let’s go with that one.
His birthday is coming up. He only has minutes before he turns three. To me, that’s when babyhood officially ends. Threes are pretty much talking and they have some measure of independence. Competent independence, that is. I mean, this kid has always liked (forcefully demanded) to do things on his own. But, at this point, he can pretty much do them. Change his clothes, wash his hands, clear his dishes when the mood strikes.
To me, he is two, and he will be two until the wee hours of his actual birthday. Then, I will officially be the mother of two preschoolers. No more babies.
Time to move out the strollers and high chair, and move in the bikes and soccer nets. As for me, it’s goodbye nursing pads and baby carriers and hello tops that don’t have to open discreetly for spontaneous feeding. This is freedom I have coveted. And, yet. It means my baby is gone. He is still here, of course, in all his personhood. The same astonishingly captivating human being. Just, no longer a baby.
I have loved and adored his baby face with such intensity, I felt I would physically touch him with my gaze. Its round, soft, smooth innocence is shifting. It is still breathtaking, but each day it loses it’s resemblance to it’s infant self. Soon enough, he will be a man. Rough skin. Whiskers, even. Deep voice. Muscles and height. Going off with some brazen hussy. (Kidding! I just wanted to see if you were still listening.)
I hope he will be a great man, like his father. There is no better role model. I look forward to seeing him treat his wife with tender strength, as his father treats me. I look forward to seeing him take pride and delight in his own children. I wonder what jobs he will take, what passions he will follow. What he will change.
But not today. Today, he’s still my little boy.
He’s just he’s not my baby. Anymore.