I was hanging out with Torre the other day (as I do every day now) and got a little nostalgic thinking about how quickly he’ll grow up. He already holds his head up when we hold him against our chests, and he is so strong in body and will that I doubt it will be long before he can roll over and crawl around and start causing mischief. Part of me is excited and proud in advance for how he’ll develop, but I know it will be bittersweet as he becomes more independent and more challenging to parent.
As I was thinking all this though, I wondered to myself why this tinge of sadness accompanies the milestones we celebrate. When we see the beauty of a blooming flower or a towering tree, nobody thinks to mourn the seed. Certainly there are aspects of loss as children grow up, but no one would really wish a baby to stay that way forever; the newness of a child may fade, but does the wonder? I can’t imagine that.
As time passes and Torre grows, I hope that I never get so caught up in what was – the toothless grins, the tiny clothes, the grunty snuggles – that I miss whatever is along the way. I will still totally cry at all the milestones (and sappy moments in between), and my heart will undoubtedly ache as it stretches to encompass the man my little boy will be, but at the bottom of it all will be joy and gratitude because growing up is meant to be.