I put Softie away today. It was hard. Maybe I should have let him keep it, but as much as I hate to see it, my baby boy is growing up. Softie is his blanket, with the soft, velvety square that is gray. That square used to be white, but over three years of loving and rubbing it has turned it into that sad color. Even with many washings, that white never came back. Softie has been through a lot. Softie has been that faithful companion of comfort for my son. But we have now traded the pale green and yellow baby blanket for a red, gray and blue twin comforter.
It is a difficult thing, I think, watching your children growing out of that baby stage. I have been through it once before, and will go through it another time after this, but for some reason I am having a very hard time with this one. Maybe because he is my only boy. My sweetie pie. I placed that blanket on the shelf in the linen closet, and all I could see were visions of those huge brown eyes, staring up at me for the first time. The absolute second I looked into those eyes, I was lost forever. My heart was stolen by that sweet baby boy.
As a mother, you go through many emotions. There's all the firsts: first smile, first tooth, first step...my favorite being the first time he told me he loved me with his tiny boy voice. There are also the emotions you go through when they break your heart: they scream at you, they tell you no. The list can go on and on, but I choose not to dwell on that. There are the emotions of pride: pride at all they accomplish; pride at the times they do right; pride when they show how grown up they are getting. Then there are the emotions when you think about how these things never last as long as you want them to. My baby boy is getting ready to start school. How did this happen? I feel as though I did not have him long enough as my baby. That is why I am learning to cherish the moments. They fly by so quickly, if you are not careful, you will miss them. Cherish EVERYTHING. Even the things that seem so terrible (can we say potty training?)--because one day, you will wish you had those moments once again.