Tonight my eight year old daughter climbed into my lap saying, “I’m tired mama.” I love how she calls me mama. My two older boys called me ‘mommy,’ and ‘mom’ as they got older–though the 17 year old sometimes reverts to ‘mommy’ if he wants me to do something for him–but my dear daughter decided on ‘mama’ all on her own. I cuddled her into my lap and hummed a soft song, rocking her as I sang. Eventually I could hear her breathing deepening, could feel her body go slack and heavy, and could see the ruffled line of eyelashes fanned out firmly on each of her sweet still-childishly-plump cheeks.
This joyous mama moment was tinged with the pain of knowing that these moments are swiftly coming to an end; they are numbered, and even this one could be the last. One of these days she is going to get up in the morning with a firm resolve that she is much too big to enjoy my lap anymore–similar to the moment she decided, at the ripe age of 8 months old, she would no longer breastfeed. She’s always known exactly what she wants.
She is my last child, and I cherish each and every mama moment that I receive. I feel so grateful for these moments.