Monday, January 31, 2011

Hold on to these moments as they pass*

Maya's turning into a walking girl. 

As the days pass, she's trying out more steps, feeling out her balancing abilities and moving onward.  It's 100% totally unbelievable to watch.

She'll stand at the table, and something across the room will catch her eye.  Instead of dropping down and crawling, she'll now take a few steps.  Sometimes she takes a step or two and then falls, but sometimes she can cross the room . . . 10, 12, 15 steps . . . all while I sit and hold my breath, simultaneously waiting for a fall and hoping for a not-fall. 

It's not often that a parent gets to look in on a huge change that's happening in slow motion, you know?  Soon (soon being relative, of course) she'll be walking.  Like, really walking.  These toddle-y Frankenstein-esque straight-legged steps across the room will turn into walking across the apartment, or walking down the hall.  We'll take Parker out to the corner for a potty break, and I won't be strapping Maya on in the Ergo or bringing down the stroller . . .she'll just hold my hand and walk next to me.

It's led to me a sad realization:  There will come a time when I'll see her walk, and I won't drink it in.  Maybe that time will be a few months from now . . . maybe a few years from now.  Either way, it's coming.  Eventually it will just become a-thing-she-does, and not a-thing-to-be-celebrated.

I'm trying to drink in every magical second of her unbalanced stiff walking now . . . and each step looks totally unbelievable, amazing, incredible, incomprehensible.  Every time she manages to pull off more than three steps in a row I'm on the edge of my seat and a little voice is chanting "stay up stay up don't fall stay up hooray!"

But that's going to fade away.

And I'm going to forget.

I'll see pictures and think "Oh, look, that was another walker we tried---right there, in the background of that picture."  And maybe I'll remember that we tried out a bunch of walkers, but I won't quite remember how it was hard to walk to the right of the walker, but keep my left arm all the way straightened out to help her steer and not get in the way.

I'll remember her cute farm splints, and how much she loved putting them on, but I might not remember how they made her feet so so sweaty and we made jokes about her stinky feet and she would giggle and hold her nose.

I'll remember that it was hard to carry her everywhere, but will forget about how I pulled my back several times a month, and worried about how I would take care of her if I pulled too badly.  I'll forget how my arms were burning and I nearly dropped things in the time it took to walk from the store to our car, carrying a diaper bag, shopping bags, and Maya.

I'll remember her how dirty her pants became from crawling at the playground, but forget all of the times that we couldn't even go because the ground was wet or too hot or too cold (and therefore not ideal for crawling, but fine for walkers.)

Time will rub the magic sparkle right off of this walking . . . but I don't want to lose it.

This in between time---the time when she's not quite a non-walker, but not quite a walker---it's just so amazing.   Every time she takes a few steps, it's like I can see the future.  Like she's saying, "of course I'll be a walker . . . and it's coming faster than you think."  Little magic moments, all sprinkled through my day.   I wish I could slow this down, stretch it out. 

Here's one of those magic moments (shot a few days ago):

If you just see a blank box and a play button, click play and the video will appear

In the words of Counting Crows, "I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself to hold on to these moments as they pass"



kris said...

fantabulous post, d. that got even me a little teary--no small feat! love to all the nieders.

lisa said...

this is a great post. and you're so right... a day will come where it seems so long ago.

Jaymi said...

I think the greatest gift Sammie has given me is allowing me to really truly celebrate all her accomplishments. I remember with my boys how exciting the process of learning to walk was. But that excitement did fade. The slow motion you mentioned is such a gift. With Sammie everyday there is a new little celebration, an accomplishment that builds and builds until something like walking happens. And after a year of walking I celebrate it daily, but I think you are right- it will fade eventually. I think that too is a gift, because it shows just how far she has come. Great post, thank you. Go Maya!

grandma said...

i agree with kristin, the tears are in my eyes. how right you are to savor every moment and accomplishment :-)

Foxxy One said...

So very true but just as you have witnessed in the past, when one accomplishment has come and gone, another spectacular one will take it's place. Cherish each and every one and they will always remain in your heart. Go Maya!!

Jo-Anne said...

Oh, you're going to make me cry. We just have to try to hold on to the moments as long as we can and always watch for the new ones. Though it's definitely easier said than done sometimes. I'm glad we have our blogs to help remind us at least a little. My daughter watched the video with me and in her words "Go, Maya, Go"! =)

Lyn said...

Maya's doing awesome - brought tears to my eyes, too! Love your blog :)

Alicia D said...

so amazing!! congratulations on this success and for all the others that will come. beautifully written :)

Bonnie@TheFragileXFiles said...

That video -- that's what miracles look like!

Tanya D said...

Wow, I'm so honored that I can say "I was there when she first started walking" ! Great writing Dana. This blog will clearly be published in book form some day.

Mary McCormack said...

I an touched by this Dana...enjoy her successes...there will be many more to come!