Yesterday my youngest turned five, which is weird, because I'm also pretty sure it was only yesterday that I was walking around El Paso wondering when in the world this baby was going to get.out.of.me. But I must have blinked and somehow ended up fresh out of babies.
After I gave him the appropriate amount of sugar and toys and fuss (and couldn't figure out for the life of me why he didn't feel like going to bed on time,) I went to my computer and did what I would suppose many other moms do: I drank and a glass of wine and cried as I looked at pictures of my baby.
Oh, what a difference a blink can make.
When I learned I was going to have a little boy, I remember feeling excited to the point that I wanted to jump up and down. (But decided not to as I remembered that I was pregnant and more likely to pee my pants if I did that--so I'm sure I just smiled a really scary-like Cheshire Cat smile instead.) It's not that I don't love little girls; I absolutely do. But ever since the moment I'd found out that I was pregnant for the second time, I felt in my bones that I was going to have a little boy--and I love to be right almost as much as I love babies. So with the confirmation of my boy, I got my win--and man, did I hit the jackpot with this kid.
He's as boyish as they come. Messy. Loud. Tough. Athletic. Busy...Messy...Loud...
I remember so many nights kissing his soft, squishy cheeks over and over, telling him "I'm stealing all your kisses so there won't be any left for your girlfriends."
(Yes. I absolutely said that. Sorry in advance to all future girlfriends.)
But just like any good boy, he has started to outgrow my kisses. He has informed me that he still really likes hugs, but just like any good boy, he doesn't call them hugs. He calls them "squeezes."
A few days ago, I was running ridiculously late. It was one of those days where you rush around so fast to get ready and fly out of the door that the makeup melts off of your face as you apply it. I asked my son very sweetly to put on his shoes and meet Mommy at the door.
"Yes, Mommy," he answered. "But first, may I have a hundred-second squeeze?"
Regardless of what my Mother's Day cards say, I very seldom feel like the world's most awesome mom. But as I looked at the clock and then back to my sweet boy's outstretched arms, I couldn't help but answer, "Sure, Bubba. Come give me a quick squeeze."
"Not quick," he said. "A hundred seconds."
My mom once told me the story about the day she brought me home from the hospital. Trying to be sweet, my dad told her, "In five years, she'll be starting kindergarten. In another five, she'll be more than halfway through living in our house. In another five, she'll be dating boys. In another five, she could be having babies of her own."
My mom started to cry. In her defense, my dad grew me up in four whole sentences. But to be fair to Dad, I'll bet my mom would say that there were days my childhood seemed that fast. After blazing past five years already, I can't help but feel like thirteen more just won't be enough.
And as my son hugged me tightly and counted to "a hundred" that morning, I couldn't help but wish that 100 seconds was a lot longer than a minute and forty seconds.
Because I tend to blink.