I never thought that this day would come. For eight years now, I hug my little boy each day and call him my baby. For he will always be my baby. That is what he has promised me in the past. Just this week, Facebook showed me one of those reminders of a photograph I posted eight years ago just when my little boy was starting to roll over. I was so proud to have captured that moment. He was so frightened. He manged to roll himself over and it shocked him. Those moments are just so precious. I will never forget that look of fear riddled with a sense of accomplishment. Or at least I hope to never forget that look.
Everyday, I tell myself he is my son. My one and only. We hug. He kisses his mommy. I expect this to be forever. But alas, it is not. Isn’t it? Two weeks ago, I picked him up from school and he came running towards me. He came up to me and said “hi”. I frowned. Where was my kiss? I asked him and was devastated by his answer. He can still give me kisses but just not in front of his friends in the schoolyard. I was confused. I asked him why would this now be. He didn’t want to be embarassed. He is a big boy now. On the way home, I kept trying to convince him that there was nothing to be embarassed about. I didn’t win that discussion point. I get to still hug and kiss him all I want at home. I accepted this begrudgingly.
Then I got an even bigger rude awakening.
I went to his room to start getting him ready for bed. I asked him which pajamas he wa sgoing to where. He picked them up and showed them to me. I then waited and he then waited. He wasn’t putting them on. He wanted privacy for he wasn’t a baby anymore. I was shook to my core. I told him that I still help do many things. However, that didn’t matter. I eventually relented and left the room.
It doesn’t help that we are nearing the holiday season and I am being faced with the inevitable. My little boy is growing up. Nothing you read before parenthood prepares you for these moments where you need to start letting go. Despite his promised that he will always be my baby, he will not be. Well, rather, he will be my baby no matter what. However, he will need me less and less. I suppose that is a good thing in terms of the life cycle. Yet, it is devastating in terms of just wanting to hold on. Who knows now what next Christmas will bring? What new assertions and revelations are to be had a year from now? He is just climbing up that ladder of life, going high and higher. And whiel he needed me in the beginning, it is getting to be less and less so.