Monday, May 29, 2006

Where Have All The Babies Gone?

The other day I was sitting on the couch minding my own business when in walks Number 3. She had just come downstairs from getting ready for bed. Normally this is no big deal but what makes this instance stand out is what she was wearing. It was one of the last sleeper PJs that she had left in her dresser. It, of course, was far too small for her to wear and we all had a little laugh and then she changed into her regular pajamas. Again, no biggie.

The next day I was throwing a load of laundry into the washer when I picked up the same sleeper that she had been wearing on the previous night. At that instant, I took a long look at the pajamas, realizing that it had been months since Number 3 had worn them. In fact it had been months since I'd even seen a pair of sleepers go through the wash. Suddenly I was overcome by the thought that we were now finished with these 'baby' pajamas at our house. Such a simple realization, but it hit me like a sledgehammer. We'd been washing sleepers for eight and a half year now without a break. No more baby jammers? What's going on? I felt myself getting a little choked up about this fact.

In the past I've always looked forward to being "done" with things. Baby seats, potties, high chairs, a certain diaper size. These things have had no emotional impact on me, but for some reason this did. It brought back such stong bedtime memories of the kids as babies/toddlers, cuddling up with them before bed, and probably most significant the touch, the feel of the fabric in my hand. How many hours did we spend carrying, rocking, comforting, and playing with the kids dressed in these baby sleepers? How many times did we look in at the kids to see their innocent little faces snug as a bug in their comfy little pajamas? Clothing is more personal, I think, and makes the fact that they are growing up seem more real.

I guess I just have to accept the fact that our "baby" is now almost 4 years old.

Last night Number 3 started going to bed without a diaper. She woke up this morning dry and clean. "Way to go Big Girl!!"

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