Tonight she sleeps next to me, her ever faithful bunny within arm’s reach. Her breathing is deep and peaceful, her long eyelashes that I am so envious of rest on her chubby cheeks, and one little hand is thrown out to reach her daddy. It is not the first time, nor will it be the last time that she sleeps this way, but I constantly find myself needing to pause. Needing to take in these moments where all is still. Needing to watch her.
Because tomorrow, she’ll be a little bigger.
It’s only been four months since we brought her home. A third of a year, barely any time at all. And yet my tiny baby has doubled in weight, learned to roll over, and hold her head up, and laugh. Learned to turn her head when she hears her name, and rub her daddy’s beard with her tiny chubby hand. Learned to laugh when mommy tickles her belly and those roly-poly thighs.
Never in my life has time flown so fast. I constantly find myself wishing it could slow down for just a little while. Let my baby stay little just a bit longer. I am painfully aware that one day soon I’m going to look back on these days with tears in my eyes as my girl paints her nails for the first time. Learns to ride a bike. Buys her first makeup. Begs me to let her drive this time.
So, instead of regretting how fast the days go by, I’m going to soak it all in. I’m going to be present in the little moments, so that I have no regret in the bigger moments of her beautiful life. I’m going to stare at these little dimpled hands until they are ingrained in my memory, and I’m going to kiss her downy head every time she sleeps on my chest. Because tomorrow…tomorrow she’ll be just a little bigger, and again the day after that. She is going to crawl, and walk, and explore, and do all sorts of amazing things…and I get a front row seat to all of it.
But for now, I’m going to kiss her oh-so-gently and watch her sleep. I’m going to watch the smiles dance across her face as she dreams her infant dreams. (They must be delightful!) I’m going to hold her close and breath in her sweet baby scent because tomorrow always comes faster than you think.