I went to step into the shower this morning and looked down. Covering the shower floor were foam letters, plastic boats, rubber duckies, and bath toys galore. I picked them up, gave them a little shake, and tossed them in the toy bucket. I felt a little pang of sadness. Pretty soon all of my kids will be showering. No one will be playing with stupid bath toys that seem to mold faster than cheese. As much as I dislike cleaning up the bath toys (and most of my kids’ messes, to be honest) I don’t want to think about them growing up and not seeing bath toys laying around.
Is this something I’ll miss? The bath toys? Yeah, this is something I’ll miss.
I don’t miss the newborn stage. I don’t miss waking up all night for feedings, or their floppy heads, or the diapers. Definitely not the diapers. But the drawer of plastic, brightly-colored kid’s plates and silverware, I’ll miss. The mini basketball hoop in the backyard that’s clearly too small for my kids – I’ll miss them “dunking” on it. The dinosaur sandbox that the dog has now claimed – I’ll miss the kids building sand castles and digging for buried treasure. The dress up clothes that are always covering the playroom floor – I’ll miss them dressing up like unicorns, pirates, and princesses and having impromptu dance parties in the living room.
All the things that currently drive me crazy to clean up and put away, I’ll miss most.
My kids are growing up quickly and will soon be trading in their plastic toys for handheld gadgets and baths for showers. When did this happen? Why does this have to happen?
I mean, I know the point of parenthood is to create and then mold these tiny, somewhat annoying, little versions of ourselves. We spend so much time trying to raise them, teach them, help them to be good, kind, sort of nice smelling little humans. But then they have to grow up on us. And actually begin transforming into what we’re growing and molding.
Is it too much to ask to keep using the neon green plastic kid plate?
I would cringe when people told me to “enjoy this stage because it goes by so fast,” and “you’ll miss this when it’s gone.” I was knee deep in diapers and tears (mostly my own). There was no way I was going to miss this. At least not for awhile, I thought. My husband and I would cheer when our kids learned how to dress themselves and put on their own shoes. It was such a huge accomplishment. It didn’t hit me then that they were growing up. Those were milestones that we were looking forward to.
Woohoo, we’re able to get out of the house a little faster now because all the kids can put on their shoes (velcro shoes, mind you – tying is a whole different story!). I think you have to come to this conclusion on your own. It takes different sets of eyes to see what “growing up” looks like. To me, it’s the stupid bath toys and the plastic plates. It’s the little hands holding the brightly-colored silverware, trying to get the spoon to their mouths. But now that my kids are getting bigger, I’m starting to understand why everyone says it goes by fast. Don’t worry, I still have little, needy kids, so I know I’ll be picking up plastic bath toys for a bit longer. But, don’t be in such a rush to get rid of that neon green plastic kid plate, okay, little buddy. Mkay? Because these are the things I’ll miss most.