the longest shortest time

February 16, 2018

The other day, my friend Zelmira was sorting through old photos on her laptop and she sent me a picture of Iole and I just days after we came home from the hospital. It’s hard to wrap my head around the idea that the teeny tiny baby in the picture now has pierced ears and long hair and is upstairs lying on a bunk bed writing a letter to the tooth fairy. I read a blog post about the short term memory of parenthood and this line resonated with me; “I know that as parents, we are victims of some strange affliction which causes our children to always seem to have been the very age they are now. With the vocabulary they have now, and the athletic ability, and the emotional intelligence and you know, the haircuts. I look back at photos of my girls from only six months ago and it’s hard to imagine that such an age even occurred. It almost seems like my brain simply has no capacity to take on new information, new coping mechanisms and new crisis management skills without letting go of the old ones.”  I couldn’t agree more. Even in the chaos of it all, I still feel present. I can’t imagine forgetting a single detail. Time feels like it stands still just long enough to take it all in. But then it speeds up again, and before I know it, I’m swept up in the next stage. And because each stage asks so much of me, it’s hard to linger in the one that passed, or think too much about the one that’s coming. It’s the gift and heartbreak of parenthood, that we let go to move forward.


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