Remember the days when the only bottles you thought about were the ones that came along with juice and soda mixers? Yea. Me neither. Those days are long gone. Though, I totally welcome any fellow moms or friends who’d like to join me for a night out. Because after having your life revolve around baby bottles 24/7, you’ve deserved to pop a bottle – or two.
Thankfully, H was pretty good when it came to bottles. She took to them well and gave them up pretty easily when the time came. She was fully transitioned off bottles right around a year. Though, I think it’s because we started whole milk around 11 months. I wasn’t producing enough for her daycare bottles anymore, and my freezer stash was almost nonexistent. I decided to save myself the stress and stop pumping and slowly start transitioning to whole milk in a sippy cup. Truth be told, we used this cup by Nuk, which I think felt more like a bottle and is why the transition was easier. At 15 months old, she’s still using this one for milk. I mean, if it ain’t broke…
Recently, in one of my cleaning sprees, I realized the bottle drying rack was taking up what little counter space I have next to my sink. And then I realized we hadn’t used a single thing on that rack in months. Wait, when did that happen? I swear some days I feel like I’m in a time warp.
So I packed up all the bottles and the millions of pieces that come along with them (seriously, why are there so many pieces?) I put everything in a plastic bin, and stored it away in hopes of one day reusing them. Oh, and you know what else went into that box? My teeny tiny baby. I mean, not literally – please, don’t report me or something. But, really… when did my dependent infant become Miss Independent? She literally asks for milk and water (and crackers! I swear, she’d live on crackers if I let her). I don’t know when it happened, but overnight, she became a real little person. She no longer needs me to hold and rock her while feeding a bedtime bottle. Frankly, she no longer needs me to hold her any time…but I do relish in the moments when she willingly climbs into my lap with her sippy cup of milk or a book and snuggles against me. I wish I could freeze those moments. Because, I know in a few months I’ll likely be in the midst of packing up something else she no longer needs and think how big she’s gotten.
I remember in those early days, wanting nothing but to be past them. I wished that time away. People told me not to wish that time away, and I honestly thought they were crazy. Well, now I’m starting to realize just how onto something they really were.
Regardless of the stage; regardless of how many times my independent child decides to throw herself on the floor in a fit; regardless how many meals she pushes away and refuses to eat; I have to remember to not wish away the time. These moments are all so precious. It’s all just another stage of life, right? Luckily for us, the majority of our moments together are genuinely fun. There are just a few of those not-so-fun ones…
So, I guess the point of this whole post is that something as simple as packing away bottles hit me hard. Who knew? And somehow I think realized one of my biggest parenting lessons thus far.
Time really is so precious.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned in parenting little ones?
“Little boys [and girls] should never be sent to bed. They always wake up a day older.”