Bittersweet Birthday Cake

From the second they place your newly born baby into your arms your life has changed. Not only because of the sleepless nights and endless diapers, but also because there is a person that you instinctively love more than yourself. I have received so much joy experiencing life through their perspective. Getting another chance to feel excited over the first snow fall or the last the day of school. Raising my children has allowed me to reminisce on my own childhood, to feel the magic I once believed in.

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Today my youngest child turned five. As I write it, I still cannot believe it to be true. It feels like the closing of a chapter that is bittersweet. No more toddlers running through the house with bad pronunciations and a desire to stay in the nude. No more little fingers pinching away at scattered cheerios, or toothless grins. No more wobbly feet desperate to walk and no more teeny, tiny hands grasping onto my pinky finger.

There are many things I will not miss from that era of babyhood through toddler-hood, but somehow those details fade to the background, slightly out of focus.

My youngest child is now five.

Now, here I am, navigating through parenting with their childhood fully bloomed, inflated with feelings of their self esteem, curiosity, stress, fear, ego, anger, just to name a few. As a mother, I feel as though somebody turned the parenthood dial up a few notches. There is more to it than just maintaining their life and teaching them not to bite people. I feel an innate urge to ensure they are each emotionally okay, despite the world of influences they face everyday when they step out over the threshold of our home.

“A mother is only as happy as her unhappiest child.”

An accurate statement loaded with stress and heartache, which cannot be avoided. I know that in a few years, when they cross over to the next plateau of their life, I’ll probably look back and think how easy I had it. Tears and frustrations will fade and I will be in amazement of how fast time is passing and how bittersweet it is that they are minimally in my presence.

However, today I am working hard to make sure they have a childhood they can recall upon one day to fill them up with joy and reminisce the magic they were able to experience when they could rely on their mommy to fix their mishaps and make them feel loved unconditionally.

Happy 5th birthday to my last born child.

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TGIF – Hectic Morning?

I woke up late today! You know the feeling. Your laying in your warm bed, the weight of the comforters securely resting upon you, the room is dark, leaving you guessing what time it is. When you finally give in to fluttering your eyes open and stretching your legs out, that wonderful feeling of blood rushing from your pinky toes to your fingertips, while you curve your back off the mattress, immediately followed by the relaxing release. You contemplate rolling over for just a few minutes more, it must be so early, you think to yourself.  That’s exactly when my responsible six year old daughter came in my room, with her new fuzzy robe tied tightly over her pajamas, “Mom, I think its late. Don’t we have to get ready for school?”

What?!! What time is it?!!!  Shit! Its late, my son has less than twenty minutes to catch a bus and the girls and I have only forty minutes to compromise on reasonable outfits! I glance out the window and it looks as if we have been inserted into someone’s snow globe.  A thin blanket of untouched snow covers the ground, while a whirlwind of tiny white flakes dance around in the sky. There is no way I want to have to drive kids to school today! They must catch the bus!!!

I practically throw a bowl of cereal at my son, while chanting at him to HURRY! While he consumes spoonfuls of flakes, I am kneeled under the table getting his socks and shoes on, there is no time to waste.  After swooping his bowl away, rush him through brushing his teeth and hair, getting on his coat, hat and gloves and running him out to the bus stop – WE MADE IT, just in the nick of time.  Returning back into the house, I have just under a half our to get the two girls ready, which would be ample time for any other child, I’m sure. However these girls will drive me crazy. I will have to give ultimatums before we “agree” on a suitable outfit for school. They would prefer to wear their white dress shoes from Easter, blue tights, red and green tutu with an orange sweater.  I insist that they look like Rainbow Brite. They inform me mismatching is cool! Duh! Have I mentioned its snowing out?   “Go put on leggings, boots and a sweater.” They look at me wide eyed. “Please” I add for good measure.  Nothing. They just stand there. “Go!” I snap sternly. We don’t have much time left before the bus comes. “NOW!” I need to holler out before they turn on their heals and change their ridiculous outfits.  My little one is in nursery school twice a week, which is not today! Thank the heavens. Although, she’s easier to comply.

We made the bus! Their teeth were brushed, hair was done, and dressed for school in adorable and practical outfits.  Its a Friday miracle!! These two are in Kindergarten and 1st grade! I know I’m in for it!  I have tried planning out clothes the night before and have rewarded them for being easygoing. I have removed all “crazy” clothes, not to temp  them and have given in to them, so they can just get it out of their system – Nothing works!

Am I alone here? Does anyone’s children believe they are attending a red carpet event, when they have to leave for school?  Has anyone else’s children have no rational thinking when considering the weather?  Anyway, I am going to sip my coffee and think about the moments of when I was in bed, blissfully unaware of the time.  TGIF!!!