"Do not go where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Co-sleeping, Parenting, and the Passage of Time

I love how her bear is tucked in between them :)
I had to get up early to go to the dentist this morning.  I took a shower, got ready to go, and came back to the bedroom to say goodbye.  Mike and the girl were still sleeping, and looking at them just pulled at my heart ... enough that I had to go get the camera to preserve it.

Every now and then, I get this weird flash of awareness that takes my breath away.  It almost feels like I was plucked from my life as a 19 year old newlywed, and just set down in the future..... 4 kids and 18 years of marriage later... with no recollection of any of the years in between.  It honestly sort of stops me in my tracks.  How can it be that 1) I'm old enough to have been married for 18 years, and 2) I've given birth to four children?  I'm pretty sure that it was just a couple of months ago that I was pregnant with my first child:  Excited, happy, and in so many ways just a kid myself. 

Then we had the next two boys, and I was happy and content with our little family of five. 

And BAM.  I get out of the shower one morning, and there's my three year old daughter blissfully sleeping away in my bed, beside my husband of nearly two decades.  

Yes, it takes my breath away.

And adding to my strange sense of surrealism is the fact that it's a life I never imagined (but in a good way!)  I had a friend in high school who used to talk about how much she dreamed of being married and becoming a mom.  I always wondered if there was something wrong with me, because while I guess I assumed I'd get married and have kids at some point, I never really thought about it.  Never fantasized about it.  Never imagined what kind of parent I'd be.  And if I did imagine it, my future mom-self would have certainly been a little more.... mainstream... than I turned out to be.  :)

But here's this little girl in my bed.  This perfect, beautiful little girl, the fourth child to sleep in my bed.   And it's everything I never knew I always wanted.


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