If I could trap your innocence and keep it for a lifetime, I would. If I could guarantee that at 20, 30, 40 years old you’d be as carefree as you are now, I would.
If I could record your giggles and gasps, belly laughs and squeals, I would. I would make them the sound track of your life.
If I could capture your leg rolls, gummy smile, and untamed hair and save them for eternity, I would.
If I could keep you thinking that your mommy and daddy are utterly wonderful, I would. To you it’s just that simple, and I would keep it that way.
If I could maintain your sweet, yummy, pure smell, I would. I’d breathe it in repeatedly as I do now.
If I could prevent you from knowing the evil in this world, the mean, the fear, the sad, the danger, the pain, I absolutely would.
If I could guard you from sin and temptation and addiction and insecurity and loneliness, I would.
If I could keep you forever my little girl, the one whose saddest moment is when Paw Patrol ends or the milk runs out, sweet girl, I would.
If I could ensure that a bubble bath would always be the ultimate healer, I would.
If I could cause playing outside to always be your most favorite thing ever, I would.
If I could sustain your obsession with dogs and require them to continually bring you the elated smiles that they do now, I would.
If I could make sure that you’d always unapologetically be yourself, down to showing genuine and loud excitement at every meal, I would.
If I could keep you oblivious to comparison, to words like fat/skinny/ugly/popular/cool, I would.
If I could hold back the tears that are falling from my eyes as I write this, I would.
The reality is that one day you’ll realize that Mommy isn’t perfect. Even sadder, you’ll realize that Daddy isn’t either. Someone will make fun of you or leave you out, and a bubble bath won’t even begin to wash away the pain. There will come a day when a dog barks and you won’t gasp, raise your eyebrows, smile, and look at me like I must’ve planted it there just for you. In fact, you won’t even acknowledge the sound.
You’ll grow up, you’ll mature in every way, you’ll mess up, you’ll hurt, you’ll have a lot of cares and concerns. If I could keep you from it all I honestly probably wouldn’t, because I know I probably shouldn’t.
But maybe I would.