I watched my teenagers at the dinner table the other night. It seems that they have grown overnight. I think I blinked and they were older, independent, nearing adulthood. I don't remember the last time that I had to brush someone's hair, or tie their shoes. I don't remember the last time I had to get them dressed before we head out the door.
I didn't realize at the time that this would be the last time. Seems like one day they were just able to do things for themselves and I didn't write it down on a calendar or commemorate the event. It just happened and life went on.
Being the mom of a preschooler and teenagers has given me the unique opportunity to realize this. It helps to keep me mindful of these things when raising my youngest because I know that one day it will be the last of something and he won't need me to do a task anymore. I still don't commemorate it but it helps me to realize it and appreciate it in the moment.
As I struggle to slide tennis shoes on the foot that's attached to a spaghetti noodle wiggling leg instead of huffing in frustration, I try to be mindful. As I struggle to dress a preschooler who is constantly trying to turn in circles, I try to remember. These days are few, in the blink of an eye they are gone. Live them while you're in them. Enjoy them, cherish them. Even the frustrating moments. Even the moments you don't enjoy that much at the time. We have our little ones for a breath before they head out the door into their adult lives.