I sat in the rocking chair in the nursery in our house holding my youngest child, alone. I may have sat there thousands of times and have rocked four different babies in that chair, but at that moment, time stopped. I looked around the room and saw the crib and changing table and reminisced about where they were situated in our old house. The place we lived before living where we do now was the place I spent my first pregnancy and brought home my first baby- my six year old daughter, Alexis. I remembered vaguely, although only a short six years ago, how the crib lay in the back right corner of the room at our old house. And how the changing table was along the wall across from the crib. I looked up on the armoire and saw the big white stuffed bear that I got at my baby shower and tried hard to place where exactly his home was before moving here. Sadly, I just couldn't clearly picture it.
By this time, my baby, Matt, was slowly fading to sleep, and as I heard the sounds of bath water running in the next room, and the voices of my three older children giddy and over-stimulated for bath time, I continued to get nostalgic. I glanced up at the wall and saw that it was still decorated with the pink wooden letters A-L-E-X-I-S. Despite having had three subsequent children who have taken possession of this nursery since Alexis, I never changed the name on the wall, even though they all have their own wooden letters spelling out each of their names as well. I couldn't help but wonder whether it was subconsciously intentional that I have let them stay there all this time? Had I been unable to leave those precious memories as exactly what they are- memories?
The sounds from the other room then completely faded away and I was lost in deep thought. I thought to myself "Oh my gosh, I am where I imagined myself being years ago! I am at that point where the thoughts I had in the past about my future have become my present. I used to imagine my life filled with many children and living in this house and now I am here. But why does it seem like I only blinked and made it here? And why is it so hard to remember exactly how everything was before?" Let's face it, it had only been six years!
Then, my daughter walked into the room. The room suddenly got bright again and I could hear the sounds around me. I was out of my moment. I felt the dampness of a tear on my cheek as she sat and looked at me. She and I spoke of her basketball game that she had just played and I told her how proud I always am of her. She turned to go to the other room to get her bath and I yelled to her that I love her. I then looked at my seven-month-old son's face now asleep on my chest, almost exactly the same age my daughter was when we spent our first night in this house. He had the same angelic and peaceful look she had as she slept on my chest those six short years ago.
I then looked back at her as she walked away- tall, confident, independent. As my eyes drifted back into the nursery, I glanced at the TV on the wall and thought to myself "If only life had a rewind button."