It's a fine line we walk sometimes, between being stuck in the mess of everyday and the whirlwind quickness of time. There's a tightrope between they-grow-up-so-fast and oh-my-goodness-will-you-ever-be-able-to-put-your-shoes-on, and that tightrope is parenting. I feel it, all the time. Rarely ever do I just feel stuck in the moment, because I know how fleeting it is, and I know that my babies won't be babies forever; in fact, they won't be babies for very long at all. But rarely ever can I just soak a moment in without looking forward, a little bit, to letting go some of the burden of that moment's stage of life.
The inhaling of a sweet milky baby head comes with hours of bouncing and rocking and waking up at night, and that's something, in the moment, I know I won't miss.
The crazy little toddler-isms and mispronunciations that I cherish also come with tantrums and irrationality and random stuff flung in the sink just because, and that's something I know I won't miss.
I love my babies, and I miss their baby-ness, but I look forward to the years ahead. I look forward to conversations with deeper thoughts behind them, and watching my little ones grow out of being little, and grow into their own identities, that have less and less to do with me. I look forward to friends and growth and new interests. I know that will come at the cost of snuggles and spontaneous baby love and cuteness. But that's the way of life. Growth is good, and is to be welcomed, not dreaded because of what it leaves behind.
But at night, every single night, someone wants me to sing Let It Go as I tuck them into bed. Technically, they take turns choosing a song, but it doesn't matter, because it's always Let it Go. And I sing, and I belt it out with everything in me, because, a.) you can't really sing Let It Go without, well, letting it go, and b.) they don't care how I sing because they think I'm amazing and not even my students have that kind of trust in me. And then they sing it with me, and we're all singing together, and tiny little Sylvia is over there in bed saying that the cold never bothered her anyway, and P is singing about frozen fractals like he knows what it means, which he does because he analyzes the heck out of that song constantly, and we've gone over every line in it and talked about Elsa's life experiences and reasons for doing things and what a frozen fractal is, and then...then, friends, life is perfect, for just a little while.
There are things I will miss about having preschoolers, and things I won't miss. There are moments of joy, and moments of frustration. But singing Let It Go all together? No self consciousness, no embarrassment, no horror that they came from a woman who lets it go when she sings Let It Go? This moment I cherish, because it's nothing but good.