When did you become this little person? The one whose favorite food is grilled chicken and peas? The one who loses all her bones and slumps to the floor because the disappointment over the gated stairs has overtaken her entire being?
I held you last night upon your third wakening. I couldn’t bring myself to put you back in the crib and have you dream for all those hours away from me. It seems like only a moment ago we were one being. And now here you are, weeks, days away from turning one year old.
It has been an amazing eleven months, sweet Bean. You and I have accomplished so much together, learned so much from one another. You have given me the first year I always wanted, unmarred by postpartum depression’s sharp talons. And I have to admit I’m a little devastated it’s almost over. Not just sad or nostalgic. I watch you stand and wobble, try to put your socks on your toes, or color a little picture and as proud as I am of you, and as excited as I am to watch you experience your world, I mourn for the loss of the baby you were just the day before.
I want to sob, “Please don’t turn one. Please don’t leave me,” and yet I know that you are not mine. You came through me, but you are not mine to keep. And so I will stand here helpless to stop time. And I will try my best to let you grow.