The funny thing about time is that the future gives you things to look forward (like Daddy can't wait to take you to Disney), but the past is hard to let go of...because you never get those moments back (I would give just about anything for another day with my Grandma). I've loved you at every stage (even the tantruming threes). In fact, life has gotten much easier with each new stage (No tears were shed over saying goodbye to diapers). Still, I sometimes miss the precious moments of your younger years (like when you used to ask to watch "Wa-Why").
This is why cleaning out your closet is one of my least favorite things in the world. Every year I have to do it at least twice. I loathe swapping out summer clothes for winter & vise versa. You have always had more than enough clothes, & it takes FOREVER. More than that (& one of the reasons it takes me forever), it's really hard for me to say goodbye to your outfits & the size you once were. It's a glaring reminder of how quickly you're growing up. I can't help but remember the precious moments we had in each & every little outfit (like the beautiful day you wore this one outfit to the beach & laughed & giggled as you splashed in the waves & then cried because you were soaked & we wrapped you up in my sweatshirt & went out for ice cream...what do you mean you will never wear THAT outfit again?!).
This picture was taken one of the very first times I cleaned out your closet in October 2010. You were a little older than 9 months old. You sweetly hung out with me while I worked, making an even bigger mess of it all.
It's lucky I wasn't in the photo, because my face was likely red & puffy from crying. You had swiftly grown out of all your adorable newborn clothes. I blinked & you were too big for your 3 month, 6 month & even 9 months clothes. Time was going by in warp speed. I mean, you were already walking. Me? I would have been happy to snuggle & rock my baby girl for the next 42 years.
Time really hasn't slowed down since. With passing closet cleanings we've said goodbye to overalls & footie pajamas. We've said goodbye to first day of school outfits & Halloween costumes. At least two times a year I'm forced to come to terms with how much of a young lady you're becoming. For a while I stubbornly kept EVERYTHING, but looking at the piles of clothes you were never going to wear again was tougher for me than letting it go. We finally said our goodbye to most of your baby clothes during Operation Organize House this summer (you actually had a hard time letting go at the yard sale, asking me what your babies would someday wear...don't worry, I've kept a few of our favorite items in each size).
I can't help but think it's going to be much too soon when we clean out your closet so you can take your clothing to college. It's a little hard for me to take sometimes. So if you ever find me crying in the fetal position in a pile of your closet clothes, a little Emma snuggle might go a long way. Maybe a little wine would go a long way too.
I love you so,