Roman James // livelovesimple.com

Roman is four. Roman is four. Roman is four. I have to say it over and over again, just to get my head around it. It’s already been three months, but even still, I can’t quite believe it. In my mind, he is frozen at three. My heart refuses to allow my mind to go any further than that. Will I accept it someday? Come to terms with it? Maybe, I don’t know.

When his birthday passed life was so incredibly hectic. I couldn’t really process it. Now that life has slowed down a little, it’s catching up with me and… wow.

It’s taken me a lot to write this post– I’ve never been this emotional about their birthdays before. We’ve been having a little bit of a rough go of it lately. See, my heart is still attached to my sweet toddler boy. The one who thought that his Mama had the moon, the stars, and the sun neatly held inside of the palms of her hands. He did everything that I asked, as quickly as he could. We never went through the “Terrible Two’s” with him and the first half of “The Three’s” were easy as pie. He was always as sweet as could be, loved to cuddle, and let me hold him for as long as my arms could stand it.

And then suddenly, in the past month or so, cuddling has dropped to a minimum and holding him is only acceptable when he has a major “boo-boo.” Even boo-boo’s seem to be happening less and less, and his advanced vocabulary articulates scrapes, bumps, and splinters.

He is growing by leaps and bounds and these days I see less and less of my baby, and more and more of my boy.

What have I got left? Our mornings. My sweet boy creeps into my bed each morning just after the sun rises. Here I sneak a few cuddles and kisses, still. I am reminded of those early days, those first three months when he wouldn’t sleep anywhere else except wrapped up in my arms. The next three when he would only sleep in my arms or swinging in his swing beside me. The next six when he would wake before the sun, and I would carry him to my bed and nurse him back to sleep, cradling him in my arms for a few hours more, where he was quiet and at home and perfectly content, as long as we were wrapped up together.

Yes, those days were so hard and exhausting, but my goodness, in retrospect they were the greatest blessing that God has ever granted me.

I’m ugly crying now because I know, too well, that just as quickly as these four years have gone, the next fourteen will go quicker still, and the next forty — if I am so blessed — even quicker than that. I don’t know how to cope with that. And so, from here, I just keep stepping forward, keep holding onto each precious moment as it passes. This is life, terrible and beautiful. This is life.

A couple of photographs from this morning — my sweet boy lying in my bed, early morning sweetness all around him. All I can do is hold onto it and let go of it at once. Such is being a mother.

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