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We were away for the weekend and while driving home, my husband and I were talking about how different life is parenting our fourth child at almost 2 compared to when our first, now 13, was the same age. 

What a gift it is to be able to see life at this point with fresh eyes. There’s a fullness that I feel. A way of being able to really be in the moment. Not always looking ahead. Not always worrying every detail to death. Just seeing this time with a beauty I would often miss years ago. 

I’ve learned to let go and through that letting go, I’ve learned to really enjoy today. .
She misses a nap. Life keeps going. .
She wants to sit at the table and not in a high chair. She still eats. .
She never wants to be dressed. She always takes out her hair clip. She’s a beautiful mess; smiling, singing and laughing through her days. .
She spills her grape juice again. Because she doesn’t think she needs a sippy cup. It cleans up.

I cherish our days together. Always by my side in the kitchen, playing in the sink or the cabinets, while I cook or do dishes. Trips to the grocery store, watching her say hi to everyone we pass. Tagging along with her siblings and their friends. Running after them at every soccer game, just like she’s one of the gang. Snuggling me at bedtime and telling me “love you” for the first time.

These toddler days are some of the most wonderful. If I could sit down and talk to the mom 10 years behind me... I would tell you to let go a little. Or a lot. To be in these moments and enjoy them because they will be gone in what feels like the blink of an eye. The details that don’t seem to be going just right. They will all be okay. Life is messy. But goodness, it’s so beautiful when you really look carefully at that mess. In one week from today, she will turn two. I thank God for the gift of her and for the opportunity to really see what truly matters.