When Kennedy was an infant, I remember being so excited and impatient for her to grow and reach the next milestone. I would think, “I can’t wait until she can smile/sit up/roll over/walk/talk/etc.” At the time, it felt like I was waiting so long for her to master the next thing. In reality, it happened within a blink of an eye. She’ll be three years old in December.
With Caroline, I’ve felt completely different. For starters, I had forgotten how incredibly small newborn babies are. Their newborn smell. Those tiny hands and feet. How curled up and snuggly they are. It’s euphoric.
Caroline is still tiny, weighing in at just under eleven pounds, but she’s less tiny now that we’re two months in. This growing thing is for the birds. I want her to stay small and new. I feel myself really savoring and reveling in every single little thing. Milestones? They’ll come. Babies don’t keep.
The picture above is from right after Caroline got her two month shots (Not immediately after, but minutes after. I’m not that cruel. Ha.). It’s not a great picture for many reasons. She’s screaming her head off and her eyes are welled with crocodile tears. If you were to walk into that doctor’s exam room and saw me snapping a picture of my just-tortured screaming baby, you probably would have thought I was crazy. And maybe I was, a little. But in that moment, I looked down at Caroline in her hysterics and thought, “She is never going to be this tiny and helpless ever again. I want to remember this.” I quickly snapped this picture, picked her up, and held her just a little longer.
I want to remember those big tears that came out of my newborn’s eyes at a freakishly young age. (Seriously, who has ever heard of a three week old crying actual tears? Because that’s when the tears started.) Maybe it’s because being a second time new mom, I know how fast this all really feels in hindsight. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked back at the “not as great” photos of Kennedy and try to remember how tiny she was and how I felt during those moments.
I want time to stop so I can memorize every little eyelash, her big blueberry eyes, her heartwarming toothless smile, and each little noise Caroline makes. Oh, the noises. The snort cry she does when she’s getting really mad. The hands up and down really fast thing when she’s really, really mad. The “ah-goo” noises she makes when she’s trying to talk to me. The cough type noise she makes when she’s happy, that I swear is the predecessor to her laugh.
If only these last two weeks of maternity leave could go incredibly slow. It literally feels like yesterday I was holding Caroline in my arms and singing her “Happy Birthday”, and here we are almost ten weeks later. Time, please stop.
Unfortunately, time doesn’t listen to me and goes faster with each passing day. Time makes me older and makes my babies grow faster. And as time passes, I want to remember all of these little newborn moments I know I’ll forget, including the not so good parts. Even the screaming at the doctor’s office parts.
So be it if I look a little crazy. I’ve got to keep snapping pictures and telling myself, “I want to remember this.”