Friday, December 2, 2011

Days Gone By

My baby boy turns six years-old today. My, oh my, these past six years have flown by! I could close my eyes for a few short seconds and see six years worth of memories fly past in a flash, like a fast-paced slide show of days gone by.

If I try for just a minute I can smell my newborn baby, the spit up on my infant, the food on my toddler's face, the smell of urine on my potty training preschooler and the smell of dirt on my young boy that had spent all day playing outside. I can smell the chlorinated aroma of summer days spent at the pool, cleansed off by the scent of baby shampoo. Then toddler shampoo. And now, the smell of men's body shampoo and body wash that he uses when he takes a shower all by himself.

I can hear his new born cries, his infant noises, his toddler babble and his first few words. I can hear his cars zooming across the floor, his blocks crashing to the ground and the constant belly laugh that comes from the mouth of my carefree, gregarious son. I can hear the pitter-patter of his little feet racing across the floor. My son never really did walk, he only runs. I can hear the sophisticated noises of guns, vehicles and light-sabers that flow effortlessly from his mouth. I can hear him softly whisper, "I love you mommy!" Those simple heart-felt words are among the most precious words ever spoken.

I can taste my baby's skin, that I could never kiss enough and his soft kisses that have always been a bit on the slobbery side.

I can feel his soft baby skin close to mine. I can get lost in the endless memories of being close to one another. Snuggling up together to watch movies or read stories. I can feel his legs jabbing mine when he's crawled into my bed to sneak some snuggles in before morning's light. I can feel his head on my shoulder and his warm embrace when he's sad. I can feel him run at me with all of his might in one of our many wrestling matches, as I push him down on our huge bed and challenge him to get back up again. He could play that game all day long and never stop laughing.

I can sense the joy of first finding out I was pregnant, the pain that overtook my body in the months to come, the indescribable feeling of contentment that washed over me the first time I held him in my arms and the dark cloud of "baby blues" that overcame me in those first few weeks.

I remember feeling so overwhelmed by how much this tiny little person constantly needed me. I can vividly recall being so tired because of his constant busyness during those toddler years. I can remember being exasperated by the endless barrage of questions during those preschool years. And without warning, I can remember the day that he turned into a rather independent young boy, seemingly over night.

It's like one day I blinked and he could dress himself, brush his own teeth, shower by himself and read his own books. He could grab a snack, turn on the radio or put on a movie without the help of anything other than a step stool (or other handy object he could step on nearby). Where did my baby go?

My baby boy is six years old today. Six years from now he will be twelve. But I'm not anywhere near ready to think about that yet. For now I will remember fondly the days gone by and look forward with great anticipation to the years ahead. I enjoy watching him grow and change and learn new things. I have spent a lot of time lately wishing for time to stand still, but I think I'm beginning to resign to the fact that it's never going to happen. Time doesn't stand still, it just keeps marching on. My baby boy will be seven soon. Then eight. And nine...

So today we will celebrate exactly who he is at this moment in time. He is an amazing boy, carefully crafted by the Creator of this world to be exactly who God intends for him to be. He is wildly intelligent. He's a veracious reader. He is a Starwars loving, Lego building, macaroni and cheese eating machine. He is quick-witted, silly boy who is constantly on the go. He loses focus easily because there's always more fun to be had just around the corner. He is a party waiting for a place to happen! He is a brother, a child of God and a friend to everyone he meets. He is six years old today. He is Titus Robert Buhl—and I could not be more proud to say that he is my son!

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