They tell you to hold the baby.

They tell you that everything else can fall by the wayside.

They tell you to forget about your to-do list, because that sweet, little babe is so worth snuggling.

Worth the unwashed dishes and unswept floors.

But they fail to mention how that baby grows.

That little one who once rested so perfectly upon your chest doesn’t fit there quite so well anymore.

And you forget to hold the baby.

You forget that everything else can fall by the wayside.

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You forget that it’s OK to forget about your to-do list, because that sweet, bigger babe is still worth snuggling.

Worth the unfolded laundry and unloaded dishwasher.

And that babe, your growing babe, still needs you.

Still needs you to focus on her alone.

Still needs you to leave the papers piled on the counter to attend the tea party.

Still needs you to pause the vacuuming for an impromptu game of hide-and-seek.

Still needs you to take him in your arms and envelop him in your unconditional love.

Because there will be time—so much time—to get all the things done.

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Whether it’s stealing quick moments of productivity during afternoon naps.

Or tending to the house once you’ve dropped them at school.

Or realizing that maybe a clean house isn’t all it’s cracked up to be once they’re gone . . . there will be time.

So hold the baby.

Let everything else fall by the wayside.

Forget about your to-do list.

Hold the toddler wrestling with new, confusing emotions.

Hold the kindergartner anxious for the first day of school.

Hold the third grader simply needing a moment in your arms.

Hold the sixth grader frustrated by another crummy test.

Hold the eighth grader dealing with mounting peer pressure.

Hold the sophomore who didn’t make the team.

Hold the senior crushed by another rejection letter.

Hold the son preparing to walk down the aisle.

Hold the daughter struggling with infertility.

Hold your baby.

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Let everything else fall by the wayside.

Forget about your to-do list.

Because there’s nothing more important, more worthwhile, than holding your baby.

Even once that baby’s not a baby anymore.

Originally published on Kisses From Boys with Krista Ward

Krista Ward

Krista is a former teacher turned stay-at-home mom to three insanely precious little boys, Hudson, Jones, and Royce. She is married to her best friend and high school sweetheart, Randy, who is the peanut butter to her chocolate. Krista hopes to be a light and joy to the world, especially other mamas feeling stuck in the daily grind, through her writing.