You have graduated.
And all I can do is see this...
When did we exchange Cinderella party hats for graduation hats?
WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?
When was the last time you put on a party hat? The last time you believed when you blew out those candles your wish really would come true?
When was the last time I washed you hair? If I would have known it was the last time, I would not have been so hurried. I would have relished it. I would have slowed down. I would have just looked at you...a little longer.
I don't remember the last time I wiped your face. Or when I stopped carrying your diaper bag...when did you not need that anymore? I am certain I breathed a sigh of relief to not have to drag that bag around anymore. If I would have known it was the last time, I would have taken a little extra care in packing it. I would have wiped your face a little more gently. I would have kissed each cheek a little longer. If I would have known it was the last time..
When was the last time we carried you to bed? One day you were too big to carry.
WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?
I cannot remember.
If I could go back I would have held you longer. Held you tighter. Sang you one more song. Snuggled 10 minutes longer. Given you that last drink of water. Watched you sleep all night.
If I would have know it was the last time...
Remember the Itsy Bitsy Spider? You sang it with Nana ALL THE TIME. Your little fingers were adorable. You loved to WASH the spider out. We would giggle. When was that last time we sang it? I am sure you asked....and I was busy. Did you just stop asking? I remember singing it SO much, but there was a last time....and I, for the life of me, cannot remember.
There was a last Trick or Treat...
A last time you asked me to hold you in the water because you were scared.
I want to hold you again.
I KNOW I said I wanted you independent so I could lay in a chair and read a book....but I never did that.
Holding you was better.
A million times better.
Remember how you use to wake us up at the crack of dawn? I just wanted to sleep! Now I cannot get YOU out of bed. Do you remember the last time you tip toed into my room and I pulled you up to snuggle? I don't. I wish I did. I wish I would have known it was the last time. I would have smelled your hair. And nuzzled your neck. And kissed your toes. I didn't know it was the last time.
I rushed it. I wanted to get to the next stage. Because it would be easier. I wished for...
all night sleeping
no car seat
And soon. You were there. Grown up.
And now that I watch you sitting on the couch this morning, texting your friends...oblivious to the last summer, I wonder when the last time will be....
the last time to sleep under my roof,
the last time you tell me what time you will be home
the last time you walk into my bedroom and tell me how your date went
the last time you will leave your stupid dirty dishes in the sink
the last time you will kiss me bye in front of your friends....
oh....how I hope I relish these last times.
This last summer.
Because soon you will have babies of your own. And a mortgage to pay. And decisions to make. A heartbreak to feel. And you will be grown up.
And one day...many years from now...you will look at me, and realize....this may be the last time. The last time we kiss. The last time we hold hands. The last time I tell you I love you...that you are more than enough. That one of my brightest days was when I saw your eyes that day at the zoo. One day will be our last time. And when that comes, I am so blessed that you are mine and I am yours and we spent so many last times of our lives together.
I love you.
Through all the last times.