A brief sampling of some of the ridiculous things parents say to their new babies. Not wise-cracking doctors, though. Doctors say clever things to their babies, for example:
"Are you forming neurological pathways?"
I spent the weekend in Chicago meeting my bff's new baby.
She's spending a significant amount of time worrying, in spite of her massive storehouse of knowledge, about the things that all new parents worry about. Should her boobs be bigger than a porn star's? If baby spits up, does he need more food to replace what is lost? Is she making enough milk? What do you do when he's not exactly crying but not happy, either?
And, the biggie: Why can't he stay exactly this size forever?
That one is causing her a bit of trouble in her post-partum emotional state.
It's true, when they get bigger, you take risks. One day, they're going to insist upon entering the school building alone, without you. One day, you're going to have the incredible urge to pick him up and squeeze him, precisely because he's getting so big, only to have him squirm from your grasp because he has something better to do. One day, you're going to remember how much you loved doing everything for him when you see him make his own lunch because he's hungry and recognizes that it's lunch time.
Still, if he didn't get bigger, you wouldn't get to see his face light up and his little arms reach up to you when you get home from a long day at work. You wouldn't get to see how proud he is to hold your hand and put you on display in front of all his friends when you show up to school for a field trip. You wouldn't get to blink back tears the first time he reads 43 words in a row from a book with no help from you.
I like them getting bigger.
On that note, my daughter "graduates" from the fifth grade tonight. It seems like such a silly little ceremony but I can't help but think about the first time she walked into school without me, the thought of not being able to eat lunch with her everyday anymore, and the sight of her walking and giggling with her friends as she walks out to her safety patrol post.
When I think about when I started middle school, it seems like that time up through high school went by so fast and it will for her. And again for me.
Do I still wish she was little?
She's the coolest kid on Earth and I can't think of someone I'd rather hang out with. She's my built-in perpetual date to museums and plays. She's the girl who will keep the conversation going in the car. She's the one I look at and see myself, only smarter, funnier, prettier. She's the one I've never wasted a second of my life being anything other than proud of.