A NEW PARENTING STAGE. WHERE DID MY BABY GO?!

LIFE has changed.

And I have entered a new parenting stage.

Because you see, no longer is ‘my baby’ a baby or a toddler, but a girl. A proper little girl.

First came the potting training, which worked – second time round – like an absolute treat.

And then came the loss of the day nap.

The glorious day time naps – that were (so often) vital for my sanity – are gone and now just a mere twinkle of a memory.

No naps. And no nappies.

Suddenly, within a few weeks, my girl has really grown up and is – as she, oh so proudly calls herself, – a ‘big girl’.

(Or a big ‘little girl’ to me).

There is no baby left in our child.

Our baby has gone and instead, standing in her place, is a loving, spirited, clever and fiercely independent ‘big girl’.

It hit me last week. That baby Elsie has well and truly left the building and it made me feel a little emotional.

But when Elsie was a baby, there were many times, when I wanted her to grow up as quickly as she could.

Particularly around the nine month age, when we had a tough ol’ time of it.

Very little sleep for weeks on end and an exhausted, cranky baby girl did not a happy household make.

In fact, just thinking back now, makes me tense at the memory.

So during these challenging and utterly exhausting times, I would often say, “come on Elsie, please grow up!”, mainly so we could all look forward to some sleep.

I knew I shouldn’t say it, of course.

I know that being a parent is about slowing down and appreciating all the little moments, but do you know what?

When I was absolutely knackered and just about holding things together, I forget all of this and I did wish the future away, in moments of desperation and through tears.

Because I am, after all, only human.

And sometimes, there are times when you feel like you’ve never going to get through a tricky phase or months of sleep deprivation hell.

But then one day, low and behold, my baby grew up.

She became a toddler, almost overnight. More independent and on the move.

And then pufffff!

Just when I’m juggling work and life and the washing and trying to make her tea, I turn around one day and there stands a ‘big girl’.

It’s taken nearly three years, but I swear it feels like it’s all happened in the blink of an eye.

So yes, there are times when I miss her baby cuddles and yearn to gently squidge those chubby cheeks.

There are times when I reminisce about her first steps and first words and cannot quite fathom that it all happened months and months ago.

And oh my, there are times when I would give anything to go back in time, to relive our first hours together, those magical moments when she had first arrived into the world.

But I cannot go back of course.

And my baby has gone.

No longer do I need to change a nappy or help her eat her food.

No longer does she need to nap.

No longer do I need to rock and cuddle her to sleep.

Because now she is my ‘big girl’.

Because now, instead of naps, we get to have longer adventures and proper days out.

Instead of changing nappies, I get to buy her the prettiest pants.

Instead of doing everything for her, I now get to watch her do things for herself.

I am needed less for some things. But needed more for so many others.

And so on we go, into this new stage.

Together.

Together, growing and changing and learning and adapting.

Occasionally we stumble and step on each other toes, but mostly we move in synch, going with each other’s flow.

Together we do a bonkers, chaotic, merry ol’ dance.

Feet moving. Hands together.

Her little hand, in mine.

And when we dance and I watch her chuckle…

And when she falls and I pick her up…

And when she cries and I comfort her…

I know.

That it doesn’t really matter how old she gets or how big she grows, because she’ll always be my baby.

And that whenever she needs me, at any age or stage, I’ll always be there to hold her hand, helping her to find her dancing feet.

 

 

With love,

Kate

Lips

 

 

 

Get ALL posts in your inbox...

No spam guarantee. Promise.

22 Discussions on
“A NEW PARENTING STAGE. WHERE DID MY BABY GO?!”
  • There must be something in the air right now. This is the third post (mine included) circulating today which is reflective on the passing time and how life changes.

    I am so concious to try and not wish the time away. I said it just the other day, life with children doesn’t get easier, it just gets different. You graduate from one challenging stage to a new one, each time with no manual or guidance.

    The loss of the nappies is ace – and in a way, so are the loss of naps. You do get to do more stuff in the day, and then hopefully get earlier nights (if they haven’t nodded off on the way home).

    And the conversations are magic. Some of the chats I have with Finley totally floor me. How their little brains develop their own thoughts and opinions (and then express them) is beyond a miracle. Isn’t parenting just magic?! xxx

    • It is magic, utter magic. Being a Mum has changed me so much, in so many ways and continues to. It’s just mind boggling really. And you’re so right about there being something in the air right now! Lots of people are currently talking about change, letting go, adapting. Definitely something going on in the Universe x

  • Aww this post made me all mushy. Elsie is lucky to have such a loving Mummy. My little girl is only one, and already I find myself having similar thoughts about how fast she is growing up. It makes me want to expand the brood, but I think I should wait until she’s walking at least! But yes, sometimes I wish there was a warning sign above every time you do something for the last time. You blink your eyes and it’s gone! *sob sob*

    • Thank you so much. Yes, I so wish there was a warning sign! It first happened to me when I was breastfeeding. Elsie was about five months old and just decided one morning that she was having no more of that! I remember feeling so shocked and devastated as I’d always thought stopping breastfeeding would be my decision. Although clearly Elsie had other ideas! ;-) You just never know when it will be ‘the last time’. x

  • Lovely post Kate. It really does all happen so fast and yet every new stage brings joy and wonder – when I look at Ezra rapping or Jed’s sheer joy in playing football – it’s hard to remember them as tiny babies. But I relish it all. However the constant process of letting go is the hardest part of parenting. Gretchen Rubin said it best: the days are long but the years are short. Your little Elsie will adore reading this post one day x

    • I absolutely love this comment Uju. How true is that quote from Gretchen?!I’d never really though about how often we need to ‘let go’ as parents, but know after recent developments, it’s all I can think about! It really is a never ending process of adapting and letting go. :) x

  • I remember this phase too of seeing my babies disappear. It continues. A while back i looked at my eldest (9) running on the beach and saw the independence and confidence he has and noted his size. It is funny how we clock these things all at once. It is bittersweet, a mix of pride, happiness and loss. But we wouldn’t have it differently would we?

    • It’s so silly isn’t it?! But yet we cannot help it. It also hit me, that this will continue FOREVER! (As in watching them develop and being proud but sentimental at the same time) x

    • Thank you darling! Sorry for the tears, I was a mess writing it (which I didn’t expect!). Parenting truly is bittersweet. Never have I experienced such highs and such lows. x

  • Fab post and its so true. Love how you have captured the change. I remember waking up one morning and my Maya was walking and talking and it all seemed to have passed in the blink of an eye, The baby stage may be over but the next stage is even more fun. You will have a mini me, wanting to be your best friend :)

    • Thank you! Isn’t it bonkers how it seems to happen overnight?! I must admit this stage is lots of fun and i do feel like I have a real little companion with me now which is wonderful. I’m very blessed, that for sure i absolutely know :)

  • This was lovely to read. I’m currently realising that my baby is no longer baby but a toddler. I’m so excited to see her developing and becoming more independent but can see myself also experiencing this mixture of emotions as each stage comes to an end. #sundaystars

    • Thank you. Yes it’s so odd isn’t it?! You become so pride and want them to become more independent, but at the same time each stage brings such emotions with it. x

  • Oh lovely Katie, I spend a great deal of my time looking back, especially to those precious baby moments that although often fraught are mostly remembered as purely magical. And yes you are so right, it doesn’t matter how old they get. They need you just as much as they ever did, just in a different way that’s all. Beautiful post darling xxx

  • Beautiful post love. It is scary how fast the time goes by when your watching your children grow up. I look at my oldest daughters and can’t believe they will be starting their GCSE’s in September. It has only been a blink of the eye since they were giggling toddlers rolling around the floor together. They are still my babies, even though they are now taller than I am! Thanks for linking up with #sundaystars x

    • Thanks Katie! It’s crazy isn’t it. They grow so fast but as you say, they will always be our babies, whether they like it or not ;-) x

  • I’m dreading the end of day time nap. Oliver got day time dry but went back to nappies, so we are ignoring that atm!
    He’s always been a mover rather than a talker but recently he’s saying proper sentences which makes me realise he’s growing up. It’s like I’m finally hearing a little boy’s voice instead of a baby.

    This post has reminded me how much of a good thing that is.

    (but he will *always* be my baby boy) xx

    • So pleased to hear that Natalie! And do you know, losing the day time nap is a bit of a shock to the system, but it really isn’t so bad ;-) x

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close