November 8th, 2011 – The Last Day of Fall

Mommy and Daddy love Fall. In all honesty, we love any weather that isn’t extreme, although extreme snow is far prettier to look at than extreme heat. Unfortunately, this year, the Summer heat lasted all the way into October leaving what seemed to be a mere week of Fall to be enjoyed. Fortunately for Jack and Mommy, we were able to spend what would turn out to be the last day of Fall outside exploring together. . .

Just like his Daddy, Little Man adores the wilderness. That was one of the main reasons we chose our current home. The backyard is full of large mature trees and bushes that offer lots of nooks and crannies for little boys to explore. Some of Daddy’s fondest memories from childhood involving taking solo adventures into the woods behind his house and I imagine that in the eyes of a two year old, that’s exactly what parts of our back yard feels like.

Jack was so enthusiastic as we wondered around the branches and leaves. He would periodically grab a branch and begin to shake it to see if the leaves would come tumbling off. He picked up various leaves of varying colors and gingerly handed them to me for my inspection and explanation. Fortunately for Mommy, my limited knowledge of plant life at least allows me to explain some concepts, like leaves changing colors, to a toddler. Mommy has many strengths and a wide range of interesting facts and trivia that I can share, but when it comes to the natural world, Daddy will certainly bee the go to guy.

The look of utter joy and wonderment on Little Man’s face is the source of endless of happiness for Mommy. The way he lights up when he sees something that catches his eye is how Mommy feels when I see something beautiful, like a Christmas tree, or better yet, when I see him light up. Those moments are becoming even more invigorating for both of us as we’re able to put words and signs to things that interest him. Jack has recently picked up quite a number of signs for things that he enjoys talking about, like squirrels, dogs, and birds.

On this particular afternoon, as we were walking around, Jack exploring, me, doing my best to keep up and film what little portions I could, the air had only the hint of a nip. I remember thinking to myself that this was the perfect afternoon for just this type of activity and the only thing that would have made the afternoon complete was if Daddy could have joined us. However, Mommy must admit that while it’s awesome having Daddy around for as many moments as he can be, I feel insanely blessed to experience most of them. Time goes by so fast. Just as Fall passed us by in what seemed like the perfect afternoon outside, in the blink of an eye it seems as though Jack has turned from a baby into a little boy, longing for complete independence.

Seasons change and children grow up. I’m almost certain there are a millions songs that have been written about those very facts. When you’re a new parent, you can’t fathom how differently you will perceive life and the passage of time with a little one in your arms. You struggle to get enough sleep and despite how many times people say, “Enjoy every moment. It goes by so quickly,” you can’t help, but think that they’re being overly sentimental. Then, one day, you turn around and the one you used to carry with such great ease in the crook of your arm is climbing in and out of your refrigerator and dashing in and out of bushes as he attempts to track a squirrel.

As a mommy, my heart aches for the scent of milky peaches that I would inhale when I held my darling Jack as he napped in my arms, but those quiet moments of babyhood are replaced by perfect afternoons amongst the leaves. Before I know it, I’ll be aching for the little boy who would bring me fallen leaves and dandelions with a look of love and pride on his face because he adores giving gifts to his Mommy. If it were possible to top the passage of time, the changing of leaves, I’m a sure the first mother to cradle her child in her arms would have, but I’m comforted by the thought that the path that lay ahead is full of equally beautiful moments to cherish and eventually ache for. After all, I never could have imagined the exquisite splendor that would be found in a dewy Fall afternoon playing outside with my Jack and now that it has passed, I can’t imagine never having that moment. And again I say, I am so incredibly blessed.

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