I was quite struck by the following:
My beautiful firstborn son, who long ago and in a galaxy far, far away, couldn't get enough of me to the point where my husband had to hold this little 3 month old baby boy up so he could still see me every time I showered, this little baby of mine who I'd have to hold on my lap when I had to go to the bathroom because his world would fall apart if I was out of his sight...this same little boy now D.I.E.S. that someone might realize oh my gawd I am his mother. And, how many teens actually DIE of embarrassment? (well, yeah, I know I did go out to get the newspaper in my nightgown and boots that one time, but it was only once).
Child 2 right now is going through, quite literally, a Clingy Phase. I say "quite literally" because he is almost always plastered to my side or some part of my body in some manner. He will put his nose on my eye (because I think that's as close to me as he can think to get). He'll lick me; anywhere on me. Face, leg, arm, etc. (NOT in a sexually inappropriately way; in an "I love you and want to lick you" way. Like a cat). He will grab my arm when all I'm doing is shifting positions, but still sitting next to him, and say "don't go, don't go, don't go." When I arrive at school to pick him up, I am told that he spent a good deal of time crying and talking about how much he loves me. If I try to talk to somebody else, anybody else, he will grab my face with both hands and make me look at him. And so on, and so forth.
As you can imagine, having a 5 year old child stuck to your side at all times can tend to cramp your style a bit. It's hard to make dinner when he won't stop hugging my leg. It's unnerving, to say the least, to have to share my bathroom time with him: every time. It can also get kind of annoying! Can I just have some room to breathe, please? Your nose doesn't have to be DIRECTLY ON my eye, does it? Can I just finish typing this one thing? I can't type when you're holding onto both of my arms.
When you have small children you tend to hear from people with older kids, quite often, some form of "enjoy this time because they'll be grown up before you know it." I can understand and appreciate this concept in theory, because it makes sense that's this is how the world works. When you're in the moment, though, it's almost impossible to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. You can tell me this will end one day, but right now I kind of wish it would! It's one thing to be told this, however, and quite another to experience what it feels like, in the words of somebody else.
I seem to have been gifted with a different kind of appreciation; it's almost as though I know what it feels like, even though of course I don't. But for the first time it's like I actually know that this will end and I will miss him and I will be heartbroken that my little boy is gone. I don't want to look back on these days and only remember that I was annoyed with the clinginess; I want to be able to appreciate it in the moment,
Now, instead of pushing him away, I've been remembering The Empress' words, and "remembering" how it feels when you're looking back on it. So, I let him put his nose on my eye, and if I have trouble breathing, I will ask him to maybe move it to my ear, instead? And when he grabs my arm and doesn't let me type, I'll close my computer instead of trying to fight him. He'll let go eventually and is that tweet really that important? And when he grabs my face with both hands, I will look at him and tell him I love him, because.... oh my god I so do.... And I think "one day this will end and I will miss this little boy who loved me more than life." Because I don't want to miss it now.