I was cleaning the kitchen this afternoon, listening to one of my favourite CD's - (do listen to that song, it will make you feel alive, even if you are doing the dishes), when Finny came in and asked me if I would put it on in the living room so he could dance. I told him that Gracie was watching her show in there, so he could come and dance in the kitchen. He told me that would not be as fun. So I scooped him up and showed him differently. We danced cheek to cheek, he rested his head on my shoulder, then we rocked out as I flung him around, tossed him in the air and hung him upside down his hair sweeping the less then pristine floor. He laughed until he could not breathe and was begging for mercy. Then we caught our collective breath and started over.

It struck me as I whirled and squatted and jumped and jammed that what I was doing right at that moment had an expiration date. When Gracie came in the room wanting a similar ride I had to tell her that alas, she was too big, should wait for daddy to get home, and we settled for holding hands in a circle kicking our legs in some sort of Russian/Greek/Jewish/Can-Can hybrid and twirling under each others arms (more challenging for me then for them).

In a year, maybe two, I will no longer have the thrill of literally rocking one of my children's world. I won't be able to lift my youngest above my head or squat and jump with him in my arms, carried away with his giddy giggles, feeling young and invincible. We might not all fit in the narrow space between the kitchen table and the stove to kick our legs and twirl each other, giggling madly. Worse still, they may not want to.

We dance a lot (we're all blithely convinced that we've got moves) but why have we not done this every day? While we can..could? What if I had decided that the dishes took priority today? Who knows when next we'd have danced. Maybe tomorrow, maybe next week, maybe longer? Would Finny have put on a few lbs by then? Would that particularly thrilling fling and swing that had him gurgle with mirth, "now THAT was SO. FUN! Do it again mommy" after he finally recovered his breath, would that have been beyond my capabilities?

I comfort myself that there will be, God willing, grandchildren. But it is possible/probable that I will have to give my back and knees a little more consideration by then.

So here is my advice to you. If you have a child small enough to swing around and hang upside down or just one who is still young enough to think your moves are cool, leave the dishes (they will not run away I promise), crank this song up (the slower bits give you a moment to catch your breath) and grab the moment. It has an expiration date.

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Koala Green said...

Beautiful post Kirsty! Thank you for that. With all that has happened this week I need to remind myself of the beauty that is childhood!

Janet said...

So true! I can still lift the 5 year old but it's been awhile since I could do the same with the 8 year old. I'm sure the days of dancing and acting silly with mom will be over too soon. Thanks for the lovely reminder.

Brittany said...

Thanks. I'm glad you said that. It's rough being pregnant but I'm trying to cherish the moments with them while they're little. And if you ever need some good grooving when Finny's too big. Madisen would love to cut a rug with ya!

april kennedy said...

I crawled into bed with Blake this morning and thought the exact same thing...he will not let me do this forever. And, I have been finding myself thinking this often in all that we do...enjoy this time while they are goes by way to fast. I have been taking a lot of mental pictures lately...ones I never want to forget...I don't want to forget how they feel and smell and how they sound when they belly laugh!

Thanks for the lovely post. Very touching.