We celebrated Halloween over the weekend by dressing the kids […]
We celebrated Halloween over the weekend by dressing the kids up as Sally and Charlie Brown, bingeing on fun-sized chocolates from our trick-or-treating spoils, listening to “The Monster Mash,” introducing Anaïs to “Ghostbusters” (a total bust!) and putting on “The Babadook” at the end of the night before I was too scared to continue watching and decided to throw in the towel and hit the sack.
The weather over the weekend was pretty terrible, but thankfully, the rain didn’t start falling until after we had already gone to bed. The morning after Halloween, while everyone else got their extra hour of sleep thanks to the end of Daylight Saving Time, parents all around went about their days feeling slightly embittered because kids clearly don’t understand what it means to sleep in. I was one of those said parents. Jesse wasn’t feeling well when he woke up—so, to make the most of the morning, I gave him some much-needed peace and quiet at home and gave myself a break by taking the kids out for breakfast, so I wouldn’t have to cook.
Akira slept through the majority of our date while Anaïs and I sat at the counter for an old-fashioned diner breakfast. While she inhaled her sweet potato pancakes, she and I talked about Halloween and the candy she got and what her favorite part of the day was. And it occurred to me again that this little girl is just growing up at an alarming pace. The restaurant I took her to for breakfast was a place she and I used to go to right when we moved to Atlanta. It was just the two of us having some quality time when she was a baby who could barely walk or talk. And now there she was, all three feet of her, sitting on a high stool next to me having a real conversation about the night before. It was mind blowing and made my heart ache a little bit.
While it’s so exciting to see her grow and evolve into the person she will be, it still stings to know that she won’t ever be this little again. I looked to my other side and saw Akira peacefully sleeping in his car seat and that pang grew even stronger. I was quite literally in between my two babies feeling all of the feels. I felt a lump in my throat that I was trying to hold down to keep from sobbing into my grits and coffee. I wondered if and when every mom has that moment. I wondered if my own mom felt the same way or if she had a stronger grip on her emotions or if maybe I am just a sap when it comes to these things. Surely I’m not the only person who is in this boat, right?
After breakfast, we ran errands before heading home for naps and a birthday party later on in the afternoon. No matter how exhausting it is to spend all day with two littles under the age of 5, there is something about it all that fills me up with purpose. It wasn’t even a particularly eventful day, you know? Breakfast, errands, a birthday party—in the grand scheme of things, it was pretty normal. But at the end of the day when both of the kids were asleep, it felt bigger and greater than it usually does. I guess that is what makes parenthood worth it all.