So tonight I gave a pregnant friend of mine Ethan's 0-3 month clothes. Sigh. Pieces of fabric that are too tiny for him to wear now. It's wonderful, really. I love helping my friend out; she was so sweet and thoughtful when I was pregnant, on bedrest, in the hospital last March and after I delivered Ethan. She and her husband brought us food and were the first to babysit Ethan when Husband and I were finally willing to be apart from him for more than ten minutes at a time (it is, however, still on record as the most speedily consumed meal EVER). So it's a great thing, and I feel good to have helped out in some way, since I'm usually so busy with Ethan and spinning in circles, I don't really feel like I'm doing a lot for other people these days.
At the same time, as Husband helped her carry the three bags of clothes out to her car and I went upstairs to nurse Ethan to sleep, I had a moment of such intense sadness. Like I was losing a tiny little piece of my baby. While my sweet little man, who is growing so much every day, drowsed while he nursed, I wanted nothing more than to freeze time and just keep him where he is now. It was all-consuming and I had to talk myself out of crying.
One of my favorite books ever is The Catcher in the Rye. In one of the final scenes Holden Caufield watches his little sister Phoebe on the merry-go-round and wishes he could put her in a glass case in the museum because nothing in those glass cases ever changes, even though the world around them changes all the time. My teacher's mind always thought that was such a poignant way to look at youth and innocence and the desire to protect someone you love from the changes that growing up forces one to go through. My mother's mind is just a puddle on the floor thinking of that passage and how quickly my little baby is growing.
He was fussing earlier today and I heard myself say, "I swear, I can't wait until you can just TELL me what is wrong." But I can; I can wait, little man. Take your time. Please don't go too fast.