As my legs pushed his lanky giggling body into the air, he looked down at me. The gentle breeze swayed the branches on the trees and rustled the gorgeous fallen leaves back and forth. I stared up at his freckled nose and his bleached-out hair. Then, I asked him an important question,
“Will you stay five years old forever?”
In the overwhelmingly beautiful, rare and perfect moments of motherhood, I want to freeze time. I want to run around the back yard laughing as we have stick fights. I want to “bahmember” as he says, his five year old voice forever. I want to capture the simple ways that he looks at the world through the giant eyelashes of his greenish brown eyes. I want to always be able to snuggle him tight after my legs give out from “rocket launching” him into the air. I want him to always ask me to push him on the swing.
I want to always hear his sweet, yet strong voice following me around the house,
“Mama? Mama! Where are you?”
He’s so breathtakingly perfect in these unexpected moments. The precious gift of uninterrupted time together. He notices the tiniest things like bees pooping or the sounds a bird makes. He laughs nonstop when a bug lands on my nose. He thinks the moon sometimes goes to visit other houses, too. He teaches me how to happily engage in the present moment. He helps me forget about a stack of bills, a dead vehicle, and a dirty house.
He quickly answered my question. He doesn’t yet know what it means to grow up. It’s a backyard mother-son deal.
For today, he will stay five forever.