I feel like it’s important to warn you so you at least have a chance to avoid me today. To hunker down in your house under your blankets or your baby’s burp-rag or whatever you can find. To lock yourself in the bathroom and to tell your littles to shush and quiet down and here, eat this whole Hershey bar so the crazy lady outside can’t hear us when I come pounding on your door. To not answer the phone when I call you. To put an out-of-office notice on your email. To run. Run, is what I’m saying. Save yourselves.
See, the problem is, I took this picture approximately last week, on Abby’s first day of kindergarten.
And then, 25 minutes later, this happened:
Mama friends, especially all you mama friends who are new to this parenting gig, I want you to know I am trying to do the right thing here. I am trying to be a good friend to you. Which is why I’m issuing this warning:
I am going to the grocery store today, and I am going to grab every single mommy-with-littles I see, and I am going to hold on squeezy tight to her upper arms, and I am going to breathe my too-too-coffee breath in her face, and I am going to say, “HUG THEM, mama. This time goes SO FAST. LOVE THEM and LOVE THEM. They’ll be grown before you know it.” And all the white haired ladies in the checkout lines who say these things that make us want to tear our mama hair out will nod in solidarity and give me a fist bump and holler, “WORD.” And all the mommies of littles will cry because they are too exhausted for this kind of Clifford, and time does not go so fast, and seriously?!
Oh, friends. I’m sorry. I will get ahold of myself and make the grocery store a safe place again. I pinky swear and cross my heart. I will. I will just as soon as these kindergarten boys let me squeeze all the air from their bodies
and promise to keep playing dress-up and shoving Golden Books down their pants.
Because this happened:
And this happened:
And, oh my word, I’m pretty sure it’s happening again right in front of me.
So next time an older lady stops you at the grocery store and tells you on the slowest, longest, most excruciating day of your life to hug your babies or that it flies by faster than you can imagine, I want you to know I’m sorry. Truly, deeply sorry. Forgive us. It’s just that, even though we mamas of young ones are right and the days go by soooooo, soooooo slowly, we older mamas are right, too, and the years are gone before we know it.
P.S. A great big thank you to Abby and our next door neighbor, Zac, for allowing your mamas to recreate your First Day of Kindergarten photo. That was Love to us, babies. Love.
UPDATE: My dad posted this pic of yours truly to Facebook with the caption “Warning: Kids grow up. This is not a drill. We are familiar with this phenomenon… and it’s okay.”