Maren is walking. So, my baby days are officially over. Forever. I have a toddler and a preschooler.
I'm not sure how I feel about all this. On the one hand, it's so exciting when babies take that first step. For Maren, there was look of amazement on her face, like she couldn't believe what was happening. "Mom, mom, look at this. My legs are carrying me across the floor. Like yours do. Check it, mom. I'm (what's this called) WALKING! Who knew?"
She took those first wobbly steps on Saturday, then promptly dropped to the floor and went back to crawling. Because that child is FAST. I'm not even kidding. She can really move. And crawling fast is probably a little better than walking slow. Sunday, she only even tried a couple of times and always with this not-again look on her face. She did it last night for the first time without thinking about it. On autopilot, you could say. Then came the look again. "Hmm. How did I get here? Did I walk? Well, lookiethere."
On the other hand, though. It's over. The cuddly baby stage is over. It's different when you know it's your last. With Brynna, it was all excitement, not a touch of bittersweet. I couldn't wait for the next big thing because I always knew that eventually, I'd be right back here changing diapers and mixing formula.
Now, though. I don't know, it's sadder. My baby will never be a baby again. And I will never be the mommy of an infant again. How weird is that? Understand, I am not mourning for Maren, because really, she's thrilled to be alive. She's happy to be her. She's excited and moving and amazed and I am too. I'm amazed at how quickly it went. And amazed at how funny she is. And how sweet. And how different from Brynna. (Really, she's 11 months old and I'm still not over the fact that they are not the same person.)
But, I'm also sad because a stage in my life is over. The other day I read a comment from a mom whose oldest had just turned two. She said, "Now that I don't actually have "two under two" I wonder what my excuse for the messy house and the uncooked dinner will be." My response was, "um... two under three? It's still pretty impressive." And I stand by that. My baby (even though she's technically a toddler now) is still a baby. She still giggles like crazy when you blow in her face. She still takes a bottle every night at bedtime. She's STILL not sleeping through the night. (Which is obviously because of the years that I bragged to anyone who would listen about what a great sleeper Brynna was and how she slept through the night at six weeks. And blah, blah, blah-de-blah.)
But, it's a reminder that I have grown up, too. I have grown right out of being the mother of infants. Now I'm the mother of toddlers and preschoolers and some day I'll be the mother of college and high school students and eventually, I'll be the mother of mothers (maybe).
Walking. It's the beginning of the end, I tell you.