Lately, I've become acutely aware that Bridget is my last baby.
Overnight she went from little blob to full fledged being, with the nerve to start pulling up on whatever she can balance with.
She somehow gets to her feet after crawling wildly around the floor, putting food, toy, and tissue paper, in her mouth.
Too busy to nurse or even let me hold her unless she's asleep.
As much as my tough labor and challenging baby made me say I'd never do it again, all it took was an easy labor, guest bed or not, and a happy baby for me to wish that it would ever end.
The coos and giggles. The innocent bliss. They're a veritable fountain of youth. And I want to bathe in it. Drink it up.
Her cheeks. Her constant smile.
As much as I hated babydom seven years ago, I love it.
Quinlan will be seven this summer. Drew is four. Margot is two. And a half.
The only solid memory I have left as them as babies is here on this blog. In a bunch of scattered pictures and digital photos on cds and flash drives. My journaled scrawlings of their milestones - most of Quinlan's, some of Drew's, none of Margot's.
And in Bridget.
I remember them through her.
As she grows up, the baby memories wane. Her milestones are their milestones, fresh in my mind for just a little bit longer, until they are all but gone, prompted only by a photograph. A video stuffed deep in a cabinet.
A sweet or funny story that I've written here.
And in other babies that aren't mine.
I don't mourn Bridget's babydom as much as I mourn those precious moments from all my children, four babydoms slowly disappearing right before my very eyes, turning from reality into a memory that I'm barely grasping at now.
What will it become in a year? In five years?
I know, I know. The best is yet to come.
A small consolation for growing old.
But whoever said that didn't have a baby.
And three other little children soon leaving childhood, and their mother, behind. Left to wonder if all this really did happen. Or if it was just a dream.
A glorious, miraculous dream.