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I watched you today as you sat mating our never-ending pile of unmated socks. I watched as the three of you chatted and laughed while you quickly paired the single sock to its mate, and I thought about when I taught you how to fold the socks together. I thought about how I slowly demonstrated the act that comes so easily to you now, and how each of you would watch my hands so closely and then try with all of your might to copy the motion with your small hands. I remember how proud you were when you finally folded those socks together and the big smiles that spread across each of your adorable little faces.

I remember it like it was yesterday. So, how are we already here?

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I sat on the bleachers as you practiced with your team. I watched you run. I remember when I sat in the floor–arms out wide–coaching you to take your very first step. Here you are . . . all these steps later. When practice was over and the coach asked if anyone would like to dismiss in prayer, you volunteered. Everyone bowed their heads as you talked to God and ended in “Amen.” I remember teaching you The Lord’s Prayerhaving you recite each line after me, and I remember how pleased you were to recite it when you finally knew all the words yourself.
I remember it like it was yesterday. . . clearly it wasn’t.
There have been so many times I have said, “I wish I could freeze time and keep you all little.” I have thought it even more than I’ve said it, but today as I was watching you . . . I changed my mind.

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It’s true if I could have frozen time, I’d be enjoying those little hands, those first wobbly steps, and those sweet little repeated prayers. I’d be getting endless cuddles and all the Eskimo kisses a mom could ever want.

But . . .

I’m glad I could never freeze time because if I could have and would have kept you little, I would be missing out on you. I’d be missing out on each of you. The you who you are and the you who you’re becoming.

The joy is that I have already experienced your tiny hands wrapped around my finger. And now . . . I see those same hands, once so small, doing things you don’t need me for at all. But, this isn’t sad . . . this is a joy to me.

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You are growing, learning, and becoming who you’re meant to be. I’m seeing those little feet I watched learn to walk, those little kids I heard learn to talk . . . growing, running, and finding your way.

I’m so glad I couldn’t freeze timeI would have missed out on today.

All of the love, the talks, the fun we’ve hadI wouldn’t have experienced any of this . . . how sad. I think about the sweet moments with the baby-you, and I loved every momentthat’s the truth. I loved it so much I wanted to freeze time, but experiencing you now made me change my mind.

Previously published on the author’s blog

P.S. If this tugged your heartstrings like it tugged ours, check out Love You Forever. It’s one of our all-time favorites.

Love You Forever

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Rachael Neville

Rachael Neville blogs over at - all things faith and family related. She is married to her middle-school sweetheart, Scott. Together they have 4 children that they homeschool. You can find her on Facebook or Instagram where she enjoys posting encouragement and inspiration for other mamas and families.

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