When you close your eyes, can you picture yourself strutting to the bars in your 20’s, looking for Mr./Mrs Right. You declare, “I don’t need a man, “and dance until your legs give out with your arms thrown up in the air. I was the type that would pour beers on my head and allow others to pour it on mine; all in the name of fun. I would drink floaters on the way to the bathroom (College!!—I know gross). No rules.
Flash forward to when you do find the person. Bars don’t seem as appealing. Priorities change. Everyone gets full-time jobs and the idea of staying out until 3 am is a thing of the past. I would rather go to long dinners with good food and company; call it a night at say...around…11?! Does that seem fair? All of the sudden, you can’t wait to wake up early so you can have your cup of coffee and start your day.
And now, I sit here looking at my 2 beautiful, lovely girls with bright pink dresses on, French braids, and headbands; eating a snack. They are relaxing after a long day in the pool. My little one just took a stick of butter out of the refrigerator and took a bite out of it. Awesome. But truthfully, I wish for and want nothing more.
You know what happened, I blinked.
It is kind of crazy and scary that it all seemed to have happened in an instant. We get older, our parents get older, and then all of the sudden Jennifer Lopez is 44. I remember when she was dancing on “In Living Color,” just yesterday. This is how fast it all goes. It happens in an instant.
My oldest is turning 5. By the time you read this, she will have turned 5 already. For someone like me, who wasn’t sure I could even have a baby, this is amazing to me. But truthfully, it is amazing for every parent. To know that you put in all of your time and effort into raising these children, and here they are, having birthdays (thankfully) and growing up. Time is marching on. They are getting older and we are shaping them and at times, trying to keep our patience and keep them in line, and wait…keep ourselves completely sane (no easy task).
Thank goodness that she is amazing. She is so sweet and polite but at times sassy and resistant. She has the biggest, boldest imagination that I have ever seen. She loves sparkles, headbands, dresses and dolls. She has always marched to the beat of her own drum. She is the star of her beautiful life. I am so proud that she is my daughter. I hope I can help her be the person she is meant to be. I hope I can do her justice.
Because when I close my eyes, she is laying on my chest in the hospital, so small and sweet. I couldn’t believe she was mine, and I still can’t believe it.
After all, even though I blinked, I was able to see it all. If I close my eyes, I can see the dancing and the drinks, the laughter and the tears. I can see weddings and wakes, birthdays and baptisms. I can see the babies clearly; I can see the first steps, first words, and the firsts of many. I can see it all. And when my daughter blows out her candles, I will make a wish. I will wish to try and make it count. Because I know that I will blink again and this 5th birthday will be another beautiful memory to look back on.
~Noreen Heffernan,Writer, MA in Public and Corporate Communications, Certified in PR Writer, Growing Ladies