Friday, February 17, 2006

Baby Books

I have set up an obligatory tradition for myself. Last Mother’s Day I made a little 8x8 scrapbook for both my mom and my mother-in-law, recapping the highlights from Incrediboy’s first year. They loved them so much that I decided to make one each year until further notice, each spanning from one birthday to the next. I have begun selecting and printing the photos I will use for this year’s project these last few days. It’s a time consuming task, just getting the photos organized, but I had expected that.

What I wasn’t expecting was just how bittersweet it would be.

Babies change at a neck breaking pace in their first year. It really is astonishing to see that take place month by month. But at their first birthday, they’re still babies, really. But one to two is a different story.

All the while you are aware that they are changing. People tell you, and you notice yourself. But sometimes you don’t realize how much until you go back and say, look at a group of photos in a condensed progression. As I’ve sorted through 2nd year photos these past few nights, I was virtually shocked to realize my baby is almost gone – having been replaced with a little boy.

When did that happen? How did a chubby cheeked, fuzz headed, barely talking, fat roll laden, unsteadily footed BABY go to a lean, mop topped, jabbering, lightning bolt BOY, just like (snapping fingers) that? I have it all here in front of me in a few hundred pictures … But I still can’t pinpoint when it happened. It just … happened. Somewhere.

My verbal notifications have gone from “Ah-ba-ba-bah” to things like, “Momma, the moon is stuck in the tree!” HUH?

I feel like the people in that commercial that strap their baby boy in the car seat, and then when they get in and look back there’s an adult sitting in the car seat and the voiceover says, “Life comes at you fast.”

Strange how watching your child grow up can be so thrilling and so heart wrenching at the same time. I’m not a mushy person, but I have to think of the saying, “Mothers hold their babies in their arms for only a brief time, but hold them in their hearts forever” – and I just choke up a little.

Well, I should rather say, I never was a mushy person - I guess I am now.

Maybe that’s why scrapbooks have page protectors – to shield the photos from Momma's tears.

12 comments:

martie said...

That is exactly why srapbooks have page protectors, Clew! My mother always used to say "if you don't have any (Children) to laugh over, you won't have any(children) to cry over! Growing up, I didn't understand just what she was saying....but now I DO!!

joy said...

*hugs* I don't have any children, but reading this post had me all teary eyed. Probably due to the fact that I am so envious of those who are privvy to this experience. Beautiful post.

naive-no-more said...

Babies change at a neck breaking pace in their first year.

AHA! This is what is wrong with my neck then!

I know exactly what you are talking about.

ramblin' girl said...

I started scrapbooking last Christmas and did books for my mom of everyone, my sister of her wedding, and my sister-in-law of her baby (now done both). I really think those are the most cherished gifts I've ever given...

and you made this non-mom teary-eyed, too.. thanks!

Jerry said...

enjoy every child raising moment....because the next thing you know they go off to college, get married and move to frickin' Phoenix!

the scrapbook idea is good and shoot tons and I mean tons of video....it pays off later.

Lainey said...

Just wait until you have grandchildren...
That's when you really get mushy!

Rebecca said...

So true Clew.... so very true. ;)

It's heartbreaking but beautiful, isn't it? :)

bigwhitehat said...

Outstanding.

McSwain said...

So very true! I get that same kind of feeling when I sort through his clothes, boxing the ones he's outgrown and getting him new ones.

FTS said...

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww ;)

moxiemomma said...

awww! page protectors! now i need me one of those for the laptop keyboard. any idea where i can find one??

*sobs*

;)

Pete Mitchell said...

I bought my sister one of these scrapbooks for her son thinking she would love it, and she turned her nose up at it. I'm printing this post out to show to her. Maybe then she'll 'get it'. Hope you don't mind.