jeff and i stumbled upon our old videos of the kids recently. we watched a couple and as much as i enjoyed and hung on every single second of each video, my heart rejoiced in having the memories tucked safely away in a black cd case, but was heavy at the same time. it hurts a little to hear those little voices and little faces knowing you can never go back.
we can never get these moments back. it hit me hard long after jeff had gone to bed. i couldn't sleep. the next day i called kelle and tears ran down my face as i told her of the emotional night it had been to relive moments of the past.
she told me she understood and said that it can be hard for her as well but that it is supposed to feel that way. she made me feel better while being honest at the same time. "you can't go back, but watching them can remind you of what you want to do better with today!" it was good advice.
i was happy to hear that it wasn't just some pregnancy hormone pulsing through my body causing me to over analyze each thought, idea and emotion. it's normal to feel a bit of a loss when looking at those videos.
the next night, peyton asked me if we could see another video of when she was a baby and i made up some excuse as to why another night would be better. i lied. an innocent lie. the truth was, it was hard for me to enjoy the movies without thinking, 'did i do enough with them? did i spend enough time with them? did i lose my temper on those babies when i was exhausted and unshowered? did play with them enough, tell them i love them enough times so it stuck? praise them enough or too much, smile enough,...????
i was turning such beautiful keepsake memories into this doom and gloom crap and it sucked. i never wanted to watch another video again.
but i did, because peyton asked.
again, i looked for signs of good parenting but this time i cried happy tears at the baby voice i swore years ago, i would never forget. time and new happy memories softly fade cherished memories from the past. it's supposed to happen like that. it's like your brain making room for better things to come. it's also a reminder to take more video and snap more photos!!!
looking back at your children at any age less than what they are presently, must feel similar to anyone. i realize this little pang of wanting to go back will always be.
however, i've learned that watching these home movies of a time that seemed so innocent...two newbie parents just trying to do it right. learning together as a threesome, then a family four. a time when taking video was second nature because neither of us wanted to miss a thing. we were younger, had less grey hair and cooing over babies was all that was on the agenda.
watching these videos have now become a learning experience for me. to remind me that we all do the best we can. at any given time, we are all doing what we think is right.
now when i watch the videos, and we have been each night, we all laugh as a family at the baby talk of beckham and the dancing big sister. it's a chance to take a break from a life that seems to get busier as each child gets older.
no more heavy heart. now when i watch, i remind myself to be a little more like that younger mama in the movie. i'm proud of that mama. the me that used to spend most of my days down on the floor playing and loving and changing diapers. the girl who started off not sweating the small stuff. the little things i and i'm sure other parents eventually worry about when their kids are old enough to participate in other social acitivities. i've learned, it's just a phase and it will pass. i used to stress out that peyton wouldn't stay in her dancing class. all of the other ballerinas would sweetly mimic what the dance teacher would ask, but peyton would run out at any given moment to find me and cry that she wanted to go home. what's so wrong with that? she was three.
at the time, it seemed like such a failure on my part of instilling good independent skills and self confidence. i remember crying and googling ways to learn how to make her want to be a part of something other than me. the same thing happened with soccer.
none of it mattered then. she just didn't want to go. so what. i'm a little ashamed at the way i obsessed over it. now i wish she would hesitate before she ran off with a friend to play.
she's a normal little girl. beckham is a typical little boy. they all learn on their own time.
it's amazing what a little seasoned parenting can have on one's perspective. and when a heavy heart over takes a happy moment while taking a cruise down memory lane, it will quickly pass when you look at your children right along side of you...smiling at their younger selves. laughing and smiling. it's a reminder to enjoy. they are! i will too. learning from them...again.
until tomorrow tonight when i write a full post- this was just a little ponder.
please go take some video. your future self will love you for it.