Wednesday, September 16, 2009

And So, I Do.

It's what you have to do, you know.

It's what you have to do the week you send your very grown up all of a sudden little girl back to school for her second year, and she doesn't need you to walk her in.

It's what you have to do the day you met with an estate planning attorney (because your fear of not doing it has finally gotten stronger than your overwhelming sadness about having to do it) and made arrangements for your sister and brother-in-law to raise her if you die when she still needs you.

You have to go home and look at all of her baby pictures and countless hours of precious videos and you have to sit with your chin in your hands and stare at her as shallow salty pools fill the lip of your lower eyelids and threaten time and time again to spill over.

You have to just look at her. And look some more. Longer and deeper. And you have to laugh and cry and feel your heart swelling with joy, and with pride, and with missing that baby, and with loving every molecule of who she's been and who she is and who she's becoming. You have to want to tweak that nose and kiss those cheeks and hear "Mama" in that perfect chipmunk voice and hold that tiny pair of hands between yours just one more time.

You have to call her over to you and have her look at herself so you can watch today's face pour over the faces of yesterday, and last year, and four years ago. And you have to curl your arm around her and rest your chin on her head and breathe her in as she laughs at herself.

You have to hold on for dear life.

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  1. I looooove that video! It never gets old. Only now, instead of Riley watching with me it's Aislyn.

    I did the same things the day that I dropped Riley off at kindergarten, looked at old videos and photos. I'm just really sooooo thankful that we have this technology now, to take our own photos all the time and actually have videos of our kids. What would we have done 80 years ago?!

  2. I totally get this post Megan! As I sat at the DMV a few weeks ago while Peanut was taking her driving test it was like a really sappy movie as just picture after picture ran through my mind (I think they were set to the song Memories by Barbra Streisand no less) and I found myself on the verge of bawling right there in the dadgum DMV!! That would have not gone over well with said daughter if she'da walked in to find her mom bawling in the middle of a pack of strangers cuz she was growing up!! Ah yes Megan...I concur...hold tight, watch always and remember the smells etc...but at the same time have a loose enough grasp to let them grow, flourish and become the independent little beings God created them to be!!

  3. I know! I get melancholy looking at pictures of my kids when they were young. I love to remember those precious times that went by so fast.
    However - I found I enjoyed them at every stage and still do, now that they are grown!

  4. You know what gets me about that video? The voice. That sweet little voice.

    When I was going through all our old videos earlier this summer (with the idea that I was going to take all of Natalie's baby videos and make a grand sweeping movie for her birthday), I almost wept at her little, three-year-old voice.

    You described the ying-yang of it well. So in love with who they are today. Yet I desperately miss who they used to be.

  5. I keep coming back to watch this again and again. It makes me smile EVERY time. My favorite part is the last line, "Now you can come in Daaaad!"

    Ohmygranny I love her, y'all.

  6. Oh! I thought she said, "No, you can't come in Daaaaad!" HA!

  7. She is just adorable! I pray everyday that father time will slow down just a tad bit so i can capture every moment but alas he moves on at his regular speed of light and i cry thinking where has the time gone.

  8. of course you do! :) me too.....sigh.....great post. thanks for sharing, megan!

  9. Oh man, I just did this too. I watched old movies of Boo and just cried one night. She was so little, and she needed me so badly.

    Big Hugs!!

  10. Oh, yeah, I am there with you on this one. I cried a few times yesterday while Camden was at school just because I missed the bugger. What a sweet video of that girl of yours.

  11. Oh, honey. I understand. Totally.