Yesterday as I was going through some of the clothes that Crew had outgrown I decided to put some of my favorite items into this box.
What were some of my favorite items that I put into his special box?
The outfit he wore home from the hospital:
His first Thanksgiving outfit:
His little plaid shirt he wore for his first Christmas:
His puppy dog socks that were the cutest thing ever on his little feet:
His green Ralph Lauren outfit that he looked so handsome in:
His nightgowns that he wore every day for the first two months of his life:
His owl hat from his newborn photo session:
|Image by Truly Blessed Photography|
I think I may need a bigger box. As I looked through his clothes I started to cry. Where has the past four months gone? Is this how the rest of his life is going to be? Is is going to fly by so fast that I do not even notice it until I find that favorite shirt that no longer fits him?
Later that day during Crew's playtime I came across a book. "Let Me Hold You Longer" by Karen Kingsbury. I started to read it to Crew and two pages in I began to cry. Luckily, my husband Daniel came in and picked up the book and finished reading it without skipping a beat.
"Long ago you came to me, a miracle of firsts;First smiles and teeth and baby steps, a sunbeam on the burst.
But one day you will move away and leave to me your past
And I will be left thinking of a lifetime of your lasts.
The last time that I held a bottle to your baby lipsThe last time that I lifted you and held you on my hip,
The last night when you woke up crying,
Needing to be walked,
When last you crawled up with your blanket
Wanting to be rocked.
The last time when you ran to me still small enough to holdThe last time when you said you'd marry me when you grew old.
Precious simple moments and bright flashes from your pastWould I have held on longer if I'd known they were your last?
Our last adventure to the park, your final midday nap
The last time when you wore your favorite faded baseball cap.
Your last few hours of kindergarten, last days of first grade,Your last at bat in Little League, last colored picture made.
I never said goodbye to all your yesterdays long past
So what about tomorrow? Will I recognize your lasts?
The last time that you catch a frog in that old backyard pondThe last that you ran barefoot across our fresh-cut lawn
Silly, scattered moments and bright flashes from your past
I keep on taking pictures, never quite sure of your last.
The last time that I comb your hair or stop a pillow fight,The last time that I tuck you in and pray with you at night.
The last time when we cuddled with a book just me and you,
The last time you jump in our bed and sleep between us two.
The last piano lesson, the last vacation to the lakeYour last few weeks of middle school, last soccer goal you make.
I look ahead and dream of days that haven't come to pass
But as I do I sometimes miss today's sweet precious lasts.
The last time that I help you with a math or spelling testThe last time when I shout that "Yes! Your room is still a mess!"
The last time that you need me for a ride from here to there
The last time that you spend the night with your old tattered bear.
My life keeps moving faster, stealing precious days that passI want to hold on longer, want to recognize your lasts.
The last thing that you need my help with, details of a dance,
And the last time that you asked me for advice about romance.
The last time that you talked to me about your hopes and dreamsThe last time that you wear a jersey for your high school team.
I've watched you grow and barely noticed seasons as they pass
If I could freeze the hands of time, I'd hold onto your lasts.
For come some bright fall morning, you'll be going far awayCollege life will beckon in a brilliant sort of way
One last hug, one last goodbye, one quick and hurried kiss,
One last time to understand just how much you'll be missed.
I'll watch you leave and think how fast our time together passedSo let me hold on longer, God, to every precious last."
The first page of the book is a young mother in a rocking chair holding her new baby boy. Her eyes hold the promise of new beginnings and many exciting adventures to come. There is a little puppy sitting beside the rocking chair.
The last page is the now aged mother sitting in a chair looking at a family photo album reminiscing on her son's life. The puppy from the first page is is now old and gray.
That last page is what got me. My once young puppies are now turning gray too. We are all victims of time. Every one of us. Am I cherishing and relishing in every single moment with Crew? I never know when his "lasts" will be. Am I taking my dogs for as many walks as possible? I never know when their last walk will be. I do not know when the last laugh I will hear from my brother will be or the last hug I will share with my Dad. I don't know the last apple pie that my Mom will ever bake or the last "I love you" I will hear her say. I never know when the last kiss I share with my husband will be.
One of my all time favorite songs is "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac.
"Oh, mirror in the skyWhat is love?
Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the changin' ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?
Well, I've been afraid of changin''Cause I've built my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Even children get older
And I'm getting older too"
One of my greatest fears in life has always been time. I fear getting older, but more importantly I fear the people I love getting older. It is true, we build our lives around the people we care most about. We are all getting older every single second, even children get older. We need to spend every possible second creating those beautiful memories that will carry us through the changing seasons when those special people grow up or move away or go to Heaven. I want to live my life never knowing when those precious "lasts" will be. I want to take advantage of every opportunity to create those special moments because I never know when those moments will become merely a memory. A page in the family photo album. A "last" that I did not recogonize until it was too late.
"So let me hold on longer God to every precious last."
|Image by Truly Blessed Photography|