I unbuckle their carseats, and they hop down all by themselves and race/toddle toward the front door. My hands are free to grab the bags. I look around as I pick them up, as though unsure why my shoulders are so light.


“I’m done with breakfast,” he announces, clearing his place. “Now I’m going to get dressed.” He skip-walks up the stairs and comes down five minutes later wearing what is more or less a matching outfit.

I haven’t even gotten up from the table yet.


“Come on, Theo Bear!” I hear from my perch at the bottom of the play structure. “Let’s slide down on our bellies!” A moment later they come whooshing down, side by side and all smiles.

“Again!” Theo shouts to his big brother, and they each begin climbing up: Theo navigating the steps, Sebastian on the bigger boy ladder.

I move toward them, expecting that someone will need a hand. They don’t. I step back. And smile.


It is an amazing thing, after more than four years of my body belonging to someone else, to have these moments where it is all mine again. It feels like every day – it probably is every day – they learn to do another task independently.

I can already see the light at the end of the tunnel, where there is a life without sippy cups or diapers or bibs or cribs.

And you know what? I’m not sad about it.

Every time a friend posts on facebook that her baby is now walking, someone always comments, “So sorry! ; )” Because yes, it is challenging in a different way than a crawling baby. But I was never sorry when either of my boys started walking. I was elated. Finally they could get around without me. Finally I’d have two hands free much of the day.

“I want another kid,” I declared to my husband the other day. “But I don’t know if I want another baby.”

It isn’t that I didn’t love the baby stage when my boys were little. Oh wait. Yes, it is. I loved them, but pregnancy and infancy were not my best stages as a mother. I enjoyed all the fabulous firsts we associate with those times, but I celebrated rather than mourned each move toward independence.

It’s true, there are times when I miss the days without disciplining. An infant’s needs aren’t always easy to meet, but they are uncomplicated.

I know that when they are teenagers, I will long to be able to keep them home and safe. I will wish they would let me hug and kiss and snuggle them.

But I am embracing boyhood with wide open arms. I love what their little bodies and minds can do now, and I can’t wait until they are big enough to ride roller coasters, to read Harry Potter with me, to zip around on their bicycles.

And that might also mean that… dare I say it?… I am done having babies.

I want to be able to enjoy my boys without the sleep fog, the distraction, the “wait until I’m done feeding the baby.”

I may come back here in a year and announce that I’ve changed my mind. But for now? I feel like I’m heading into the best years of our lives: no babies, just two amazing, changing little boys.

side by side belly sliders



14 Responses to Confession
  1. NJ @ A Pocket Full Of Dinosaurs
    April 18, 2012 | 5:36 am

    I’m so glad to know that I’m not the only one who didn’t love the baby stage! Super cute pic! xoxo

  2. Missy | Literal Mom
    April 18, 2012 | 5:42 am

    So sweet and true. I have my moments when I’m so sad it’s gone and then I have my moments when I’m so happy we’re at this “older” stage now. Both have their pros and cons.

  3. Melinda@LookWhatMomFoundandDadtoo!
    April 18, 2012 | 6:52 am

    they have so much more personality at the toddler stage, I totally get it.

  4. Rach (DonutsMama)
    April 18, 2012 | 8:58 am

    I have felt like you in many ways too. People asked me softly if I was upset that I was done nursing. No, I actually felt untethered for the first time in 9 months. I secretly wished I’d stopped earlier. Sometimes I wonder too if I’m a better older kid mom. But the snuggles. Oh, I love the snuggles at this age though.

  5. Shell
    April 18, 2012 | 9:20 am

    Oh, I SO hear you.

    Babies are sweet, but there’s something to be said for kids who walk all on their own and can do a lot independently. I was pregnant and/or breastfeeding for something crazy like 5 years straight. I was ready to have my body back to ME. And not having to wipe butts? Oh yeah!!!!

  6. Gramma
    April 18, 2012 | 11:15 am

    I am proud of the insight you have achieved and the courage to embrace and express it. Well done!

  7. Life As Wife
    April 18, 2012 | 11:17 am

    So funny because I am the complete opposite. the newborn stage? I want to go back. This whole “trying to discipline and teach a kid thing” is hard and oh so scary.

    I’m glad you’re enjoying your boys though and their growing independence.

  8. Tricia
    April 18, 2012 | 4:04 pm

    Love this post. I loved the baby days but also love that my daughter can do things on her own now. It’s so nice to settle into the big-kid phase with our children 🙂

  9. humanmama
    April 18, 2012 | 4:34 pm

    YESSS. Trying to remember to enjoy the new baby when he comes, because I already have that feeling of “but they’re SO EASY now…” and now I’m going to begin again. So I’ll just try to appreciate where we’re at…but I LOVE when people are buckling themselves in. Love.

  10. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf
    April 18, 2012 | 7:44 pm

    This is so true. I had a similar thought yesterday. My husband and I were both in the kitchen, making and dinner and talking. I stopeed and realized that the boys were in their room playing nicely together. No yelling. No need to mediate. I literally let out a sigh of relief. I know that I’m done with having kids and I’m so OK with that.

  11. Pamela
    April 19, 2012 | 12:58 pm

    I get what you are saying, especially as we weigh out whether we are ready to go through this stage again as we decide whether to go for two. While I do miss parts of V’s babyhood as she gets bigger and grows more independent, there is also a sense of freedom, of returning to myself (and I miss myself and also my husband!), and I’m not sure if I’m ready to go back to that other place…yet. Then I have the moments where she looks like my little baby again, when she is peacefully sleeping, and I think…well, maybe. So I have a foot on both sides of the fence, I think! I’m just trying to appreciate each stage as it passes, with a realistic eye on whether I’m willing to do the hard parts of infancy again. Great post!

  12. Rach
    April 19, 2012 | 3:40 pm

    Aww, they are growing up so fast! I don’t have experience with kiddos of our own so I can’t really speak to a favorite stage, but I do know that my nieces and nephews are all in the toddler/little kid stage right now and I LOVE it! 🙂

  13. Sorta Southern Single Mom
    April 20, 2012 | 3:15 am

    What a beautiful post, Mama! Celebrate rather than mourn… I did the opposite and I shouldn’t have!

  14. MEL
    April 26, 2012 | 12:46 pm

    Wow, sounds like you’re really hitting your stride! Good luck and enjoy some of that “me” time so many of us need. (We’ll keep you posted when we get there, too!). 😉

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