As a disclaimer at the beginning of this post, I will freely confess that I am not finding the last month of pregnancy particularly enjoyable. Mostly I’m feeling like surely it’s already been nine months and this whole state of existence should have ended by now… but that’s obviously not the case, as anyone can plainly see.
This morning I took some pictures of my 18 month old trying to do a forward roll. She’s really good at getting her head on the floor, but cannot push herself over. Still, she tries and she laughs and she does it over and over again.
It was cute enough to me that I managed to get the camera out, and even crouch down on the floor in an attempt to get a photo I would like.
Then she found a pair of my shoes that I didn’t put away after coming home from church yesterday.
So we took some pictures of her trying to do a somersault in her mom’s heels.
Little moments like this, I know I will miss someday. I’m sure I’ll wish I still had a baby rolling around on my family room floor, babbling and laughing without a care in the world.
Yes, I know I will miss this.
But there are other things I wonder about.
I just finished watching a slideshow of our vacation pictures, which I turned on to help that same adorable 18 month old snap out of a tantrum she was throwing. Thankfully it worked, but I ended up with her sitting on top of my pregnant stomach, with my three year old sitting on what is left of my lap, and my four year old sitting on my shoulder, wrapping her legs around my arms, neck, and so forth.
Let’s just say that I felt a little smothered during that 30 minute experience. And we’ll say that I felt a little bit warm with about 80 extra pounds sitting all over me. But I just sat there and told myself that I should endure it because the children were enthralled, because we were together, because aren’t mom’s supposed to handle moments like this without complaint?
And the question came to my mind, “will I miss this?”
I honestly don’t know. Given how I feel at the moment, I would think that the answer is NO WAY! But what if I’m wrong? What if I miss the feeling of having so many bodies so close to me that I want to scream? It happened yesterday at church, too. I had this moment when I wondered if I would be able to just sit there with so many people scooting closer and closer…or if I would just stand up and scream. Gratefully I survived without causing a scene.
But really, will I miss it? Will I miss the feeling of being the bottom of the family dogpile?
Barbara Kingsolver wrote, “It’s surprising how much of memory is built around things unnoticed at the time.”
Believe me, I noticed this one. But if I wasn’t 8 months pregnant, I might not have noticed it so much.
My guess is this: I may not particularly miss the feeling of being smothered by lots of wiggly little bodies, but I’ll probably miss what it represents. I think it represents a stage of life when all of a child’s problems can be solved simply by closeness, by being near their parents. A time when the world really is as small as the walls of your home and you can still keep everything unwanted out of their sweet little lives. A stage when their needs and their hearts are so uncomplicated, when all they need or want is love. A time when I really can fix most of their problems with a kiss and a hug. I’m pretty sure I will miss that.