If I could hold you once again . . .
Just for one more minute, the way you are now.
Right before the now I lay me down to sleep prayers, head nestled between my shoulder and chin.
If I could hold you just once more and tell you it will be all right when something has given you a scare.
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Could I hold you a little longer while you giggle as cars drive by and we count them one by one sitting together outside?
You see, I want to remember holding you exactly as you are, how your little body that holds your precious soul feels, looks, and smells.
Will I forget holding you? When these days of running rampant, filled with play, squeals and tantrums have soon passed us by?
Will I forget the way you feel in my arms when you’re older and resembling too much of a grown-up size?
I fear one day I will forget what it feels like to hold what’s most precious in this world right here, in my arms.
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That’s why on the most tiresome days—the ones that feel like they won’t end, when my patience has run past empty and you’ve struck nearly all the nerves—I try to slow down, take a breath, and tell myself to hold you all the more still, just a little longer, just one second more, knowing even these days will one day be far gone.
I’ve held you since the beginning—so small, fragile, and pure.
I’ll hold you as long as I can because I can’t imagine a world where holding you will no longer be.
But, remember even when you’re too big and all grown up and I can no longer cradle you in my arms, swing you on my hip, or carry you with both my arms wrapped around you, I will still be there . . . to hold you.
To hold you in my thoughts.
To hold you in a hug (if you will let me).
To hold you in my prayers.
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And to always, without ceasing, hold you in my heart.
And when that world comes when I can no longer hold you the way I can now, I will look back somewhere tucked away in that special place where those memories go . . . so I can hold you once again.