Any parents out there have photos of all your kids looking happily in the general direction of the camera? Cherish those. Seriously. I now know that it's a nearly impossible task, and takes three times longer, twice as many photographers, and infinite patience to get a decent photo of two kids compared with just one.
Our first family of four photo session was slightly disastrous. One crying newborn quickly turned into two crying kids. Ez refused to stay put, and then refused to look toward the camera. And in the few photos where the kids were calm and looking at the camera, of course mom looked exasperated or was blinking.
Fast forward two hours and we had a handful of decent photos, two sleeping kids, and a bag of See's candy for me. I commented on how disastrous the shoot had been and Joe said it had gone about as well as could be expected and reminded me that Ez is still only two. From his perspective he was hungry, wanted a snack, and we were focusing all our attention on Declan, who was currently screaming, while ignoring the most important thing in Ez's two year old world at the moment: some goldfish crackers.
Something about that little reminder hit a nerve. As soon as we got into the car I burst into tears. Not because of the photo shoot frustrations, but because I want my first baby to stay a baby. Having Declan here is such a visual reminder of how much bigger Ez has gotten in just two short years. Also, with an actual baby in the house, Ez has to grow up in certain ways because we can't coddle his every want and need instantaneously. I know he was bound to grow up and become more independent sooner or later, but it's too much for my hormonal self to handle at times.
Over the past two years I've had plenty of "stop growing so fast!" moments, but never accompanied by this many tears. It was such a flood of emotions. I could see Ez starting school, having sleepovers, driving, graduating, and leaving for college like it was all just around the corner, with Declan not far behind. I'm not sure if it's because I know how fast each newborn/baby/toddler phase goes now. Or because I think our little family may be complete, and there will be no more babies. But the whole "they grow up so fast" thing is really hitting me hard lately.
Any other mamas have these kinds of meltdowns? If not, we'll just call it postpartum hormones ;) Now you'll have excuse me, I'm off to cuddle my babies while they'll still allow it.