My oldest child turned eleven two months ago and my youngest has been one for four months. Eight more months, which will fly right by, and she will be two years old, no longer really a baby. I remember my oldest when he was this age. Of course, I was expecting his brother already, due in a few months (they are seventeen months apart). With each little step my little one makes in her development, I think back to when her older siblings hit those milestones. She just figured out how to climb onto the kitchen chairs. Next will be the crib. One of her brothers climbed out of the crib at sixteen months. She is fifteen months, almost sixteen months. She is so quickly moving away from the baby stage. And it makes me sad.
But I am also happy to watch my kids grow up. It's wonderful watching them develop into who they will become. I love that my oldest child is a fantastic artist who can whip out amazing drawings at request. He is also able to play the piano by ear, which then he will figure out the music for his trumpet also. He has even written some of his own music. I love that my second oldest can fold any paper into any shape or design you want him to. My third child is very athletic and strong and it is fun to watch him play and do any sport. My fourth child loves to sing and dance and has natural ability there. My fifth child is good with his hands and it will be fun to see what he does with his talents (he is only three). I have no idea what my baby's strengths are yet, but it will be such fun to find out.
It is still sad that they are growing up so quickly. The innocence of their faces and the sweetness of their questions is disappearing so much more quickly than I imagined. I remember when my oldest was a newborn, I thought about him being in elementary school, second grade specifically (I had been a second grade teacher before he was born), and how far away that seemed. Now he is going to be starting middle school and in a few short years, high school, and then he'll be gone. And the kids following him will just be even more speedy.
Watching your kids grow up is a bittersweet experience, indeed.