A mile out of town sits a little farmhouse on my family’s farm. I grew up in that farmhouse just like my dad and his siblings. My parents built a new house and moved when I was a sophomore in college. My cousin and his wife and their kids moved into the farmhouse. Then a few years later my sister and her family moved in and are now raising their 3 little babes there. Inside that farmhouse is a door to a closet. And on the inside of that door are close to 100 names. That door holds the names, dates, and heights of family and friends. Ranging all the way from when my dad was young to today. I love that door.
When Landry was around 1 year old we got a large wooden ruler to put in our hallway. It’s sole purpose is to hold the names, dates and heights or our family and our kid’s friends names. I’m not sure it can hold as many as it’s not as big. But we will find a spot for them. When Cohen turned 1 we started putting his measurements on that ruler. We recently measured Lainey for the first time when she turned one. We looked at how much Landry and Cohen have grown this past year. Landry, 2 inches and Cohen, 3. I was quickly reminded that while the chaos, messes and constant need for sippy cups to be refilled feels like all my life consists of most days, it will be over sooner than I’m ready for.
Lainey is our last baby. (Thank God, I can’t handle another pregnancy) While I am 100% good with our decision to be done, it doesn’t mean I won’t miss the baby stage. The day Cohen doesn’t let me pick him up and hold him and hug and kiss him will be a horribly sad day for me. I think about who these little people will grow up to be. I am excited to see who they become. It also brings me a lot of worry. I worry we will make mistakes as parents that will cause them to go down the wrong road. I worry we won’t find the right balance between helping them experience all the world has to offer while hoping to keep them away from all the ugly there is out there too. And I worry about Lainey. There is so much about her future that’s unknown. Will she be able to live independently? Get married? Have a job? We had two full days of appointments for her last week. One was with a geneticists. We talked about a lot. But one thing she said stuck with me the most. When we were discussing all her therapies and things we can do to help her be successful, she said that while those things are all very important, the most important thing we can do is love her. And interact with her. And read with her. And do all the things we would do with our other two kids. I think the most important thing we can do for any of our kids is believe in them. And make sure they know it.
Children are likely to live up to what you believe of them.Lady Bird Johnson