It’s bitter sweet….
It’s that bitter sweet feeling where my eyes are struggling not to well up while at the same time, my lips are turning into a satisfied smile.
It is the bitter sweetness where I enjoy watching my boys growing up but at the same time, I don’t want them to grow up that fast.
The one where I want them to build confidence and find their own identity and independence, but I still want them to be my babies and rely on me.
The one where I want them to grow wings, eventually take flight and experience the world, but I still want them close by.
And I’m having this feeling already when they are only 4 and 2 years old…..
This bitter sweetness first hit me when I stopped breastfeeding each of my boys. I was so very emotional – I felt like my boy didn’t need me anymore. I was his only source of sustenance for so many months, and having turned him into Mr. Chubby, he now preferred solids and the bottle over me. I missed the cuddles, the closeness, the mommy-son bonding.
Then I experienced it again when they started school unaccompanied, and went on the school bus by themselves. Rationally, I knew they were more than ready to embrace this new adventure. It was I who was not ready – emotionally.
Emotionally, it was like they were little birds that have learnt to fly, and is now leaving the nest for the first time to hunt unaccompanied. There are so many experiences and dangers out there – and I am no longer holding his hands as he faces them.
And now, I’m going through this again, this time with my eldest. My darling boy who is developing greater independence, self-confidence, and his own brand of creativity.
What happened to the days of me asking for a hug, and he’d drop everything and run to me with outstretched arms.
What happened to the days of me searching for a kiss, and a big fat wet one would be planted on my face.
What happened to the days of me dragging him over for a cuddle, and he would snuggle his little body more tightly into mine.
Instead, I’m met with delayed tactics of running off, wiggling away or simply ignoring me. Or denials like “No, Mommy, I’m busy!”, “No, I kissed you already!”, “Later!” – all expressed as if I’m annoying him!
My baby boys are growing up before my eyes, and it’s bitter sweet. The boys are happy, obviously oblivious to their Mommy’s anguish. Admittedly, it is I who am not ready to let go of them needing less and less of me.
If I’m like this now, how am I ever going to survive them leaving home?!?!