The Free Motion Quilting Project: Where did my baby go?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Where did my baby go?

I have heard it a million times "it only seems like yesterday and you were just a little baby..." I've heard it from my parents and many other parents I've met.  Almost everyone I've ever know who's ever had children has said something to that effect.

I never expected to say it myself, but today I definitely am.

It feels like these last 4 years have happened in a blink any my cute, chubby baby boy is now all gone and replaced with a skinny, super fast running, even faster talking little boy ready to take on the world with a light saber in one hand and a cookie in the other.

What exactly is making me so maudlin today?  Today James will graduate from Rainbow Connection preschool, where he first learned the hardest life lesson of all: that mom can't be around all the time. 

Those first few weeks were harrowing as every time I dropped him off, he'd scream and cling and beg me not to go.  These days, four years later, I'm lucky to get a good-bye let alone a hug as he rushes into class ready to play and talk to friends.

Obviously that lesson about mom not always being around has been learned, and now I've got to learn a lesson myself: that my little boy will grow up quicker than I can imagine, and I'd better make the most of it while he still likes me!

free motion quilting | Leah Day
I'm so very happy I took this month off because I doubt I'd be able to make a video today or teach anything worth learning about quilting.  It's not that I'm totally overwhelmingly emotional, it's just that I'm extremely preoccupied with memories of my little baby and, yes, some regrets for time I spent working when I could have been playing.

It's a lesson I return to time and time again: that time and attention is IMPORTANT.  More important than it ever gets credit for.  Just the simple response "Yes, I will stop working to play with you.  What would you like to do?" it is simple, the time may only be a few minutes, but it says so much.

That response says: Yes, I will stop for you.

No, I don't need to work all the time.

No, I don't really need to finish this right this second.

Yes, I want to play with you.

Yes, I see you and acknowledge you.

Yes, I love you.

Today is yet another reminder to stop, acknowledge the limited time I have with my son at this age, and make more room for him in my day.

Attention is a small thing, but it is also a huge thing.  In a way, it is the only thing I can give him that he can take with him when, in just 13 more years, he will graduate from high school and leave home.  Memories of time and is really the only thing we have left.

Let's go quilt,



  1. You are a wise young woman, Leah. Congratulations to you and James!

  2. Congratulations Leah, you have figured out what some never do or figure it out when its too late. Fill those memory times up to overflowing and in 13 years you will be sad again to have him moving off into the world but you will have no regrets. Life lived with as few 'if I'd onlies' is one that leaves you with comfort and a job/life well lived.

  3. Aw, that brings back memories of my 2 boys' pre-school graduations. Looking back, I think it was a bigger thing than any elementary school or even middle school graduation. Maybe because it was the first, maybe because the adults who care for them at that age were so wonderful. Maybe because at that age, they're so darn CUTE! Enjoy, and have fun celebrating this mile stone! FWIW, I'm still enjoying time with my teen son :-).

  4. Congratulations on the first of many graduations for your son! yes savor every minute. My baby boy just graduated from college and will be back home in a few weeks. I am thrilled having him back home as I know it wont be long before he is out on his own for good. Fortunately my son has always wanted me around but I also tried to give him space. As long as I kept good meals cooking or a fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies around life was great. i have been blessed with an awesome, appreciative, thoughtful, intelligent man now and I wish you all the joys and happiness I have experienced in raising a son. I would not trade it for the world!!

  5. Oh Leah, it goes too fast doesn't it dear~! I am now a grammama, and that too goes by fast, even quicker~

    I love the baby photo with the cat, and years later, still with his kitty friend~

    Enjoy your time , soak it all up~ every minute that you can~ we miss you, but know you will always be better for putting Family First~

    Have fun with your wee one~


  6. Been there. So glad to hear you have your head on straight about James getting older so fast. In my house, you're never too old or too big to hug and kiss your mama. If you resist, I'll tackle you and tickle you until I get my kiss. Even if it is on the top of my head. Love every minute.

  7. Thanks for the reminder, Leah. Think I'll go play. ;)

  8. Hi Leah,

    I too have this happening at home at the moment. My eldest boy starts school in September and I am feeling it. My other goes next year and then what??

    I have taken the Summer off from my usual business and whilst it is not easy - we have to make this time count.

    Enjoy your precious little boy.
    Happy Stitching!
    Al xxx

  9. Girl, I'm right there with you. My daughter is the same age as James. She had her graduation from pre k last Wednesday, school isn't offically out till June 1st. I decided her last day would be this past Friday. We need some "us" time before her big brother (13 yrs old) gets out of school. We went to the zoo yesterday and had so much fun. Remember to stop and smell the flowers! Hugs, Lee Ann (

  10. Oh Leah! Congratulations to James. He's adorable. I've been thinking along the same lines a lot lately, even though I still have a 2 y.o., I also have one 7, and one 13. It's only 5 more years before the 13 y.o. will be graduating high school. Scary stuff! Have a super day & try not to cry too much.


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