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Archive for June 12th, 2009

The Freeze Ray

Wilmington vacation 2008 028I am searching for a freeze ray. Most moms would agree that a freeze ray that would allow us to freeze our children in various stages of their lives is just the ticket. When they are eight months old and laughing at everything around them, we think this is the stage, the absolute best stage and we would love to freeze that moment, never to be lost or forgotten. When they first start talking and begin to say the funniest things, wouldn’t that be a great time to save. The time when they are five and they step off of the school bus, reach out for your hand and before both feet even touch the asphalt they start telling you all about their day. That is the best, right?

With each different stage I think my children have reached the very best one and I want to freeze them right there. I want to savor every moment and do whatever it takes to keep them from growing too big too fast and becoming the adult who will walk out that door for college and eventually into their adult real life.

My oldest child is now fifteen. He is almost a foot taller than I am, can bench press my weight at the gym and has a thousand things going on in his life, but there are times when I can still see that little boy inside of him. There are days when he comes down the stairs and into our kitchen and without any prompting walks into my arms for a hug. I have a rule about hugs. I only stop hugging when they do. If they want a ten second hug that is fine but if they need a long, I need my mommy kind of hug I am okay with that. I am never too busy to hug my children. I have noticed lately that even as he is setting boundaries and proving to everyday how much he has grown, his hugs are lasting longer. And, of course, I love this and want to freeze these moments.

These days I am even more aware of his growing up and moving on and there is a part of me who is not ready for this – a part of me that isn’t sure I ever will be. But I don’t have a freeze ray that can stop it from happening, freezing him in time so that I can keep him here in my arms forever. I have to remind myself of all of those other stages that I thought could not get better. I have to remember the stages that followed each one of those milestones and imagine what he will be like as he walks across the stage to get his diploma or walks into his college dorm for the first time. I have to try to imagine how much I will want to freeze the moment I first realize he has met the girl he will marry or the moment his first child is born. So yes, I would like a freeze ray, but if I am honest with myself, I know I will want one for all of those times as well.

Each stage in their lives is better than the one before it. With each year they grow and become better and more developed individuals. And each step of the way I love them even more than I did in the last stage. But even knowing all of this, I still have to remind myself of it every time I start searching for that blasted freeze ray.

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