Monday, May 21, 2007


No More High Chair

The Girl refused her high chair a couple of days ago, and hasn't looked back.

On Saturday, she went without pull-ups for the first time. Her first 'big girl' undies were festooned with Curious George. She stayed dry all day, to the delight of all.

We retired the crib a couple of months ago, which was traumatic enough. Now she's mowing down milestones every few days.

One night last week, she and I were playing in the living room. She wrapped a blanket around her head like a bonnet. I told her she looked like a baby. She froze, shocked, and corrected me:

“I'm not a baby! I'm a big woman!”


Between TB and TG, we've had a high chair at the table for the last six years. TG is our last, so when we put it away, that's that. We've been buying diapers and/or pull-ups for the last six years – now, abruptly, not. Soon we'll probably retire the sippy cups and the stroller.

That phase of our lives will be over.

With little ones, I've heard it said, the days are long but the years are short. It's true.

There's something incredibly fulfilling about watching them grow into themselves. It's like watching a puzzle solve itself. Each new bit of independence is cause for real joy. Their ability to surprise you every single day is one of those little facts that nothing can really prepare you for. And there's real parental pride in watching, say, TB spontaneously offer a tissue to his crying friend. He's on his way to becoming a good man, which is all I can ask. Even at almost-six, you can see it.

And it will certainly be easier, on a day-to-day level, with less baby paraphernalia around.

But we've had that high chair at the table for a long time. The table doesn't look quite right without it.

She's not a big woman yet, but she is getting to be a big girl. I'm proud of her, and I wouldn't have it any other way. But I still think she looks a little like a baby.

Ah...they do grow up sooooo quickly.

I can remember chasing my nephew all over the yard. Seems like yesterday.

He's now playing SERIOUS hockey (12 years old). He'd rather be cut off from his computer games than be seen with his incredibly dorky aunt.

*SIGH!* It is as the world should be...
My little babies are 23 and 20, one a college graduate (working for peanuts at her first real job, but supporting herself), and the other a rising junior at Pitt. And where did all this gray hair come from?

It goes so fast, and it is sooooo worth every penny, every gray hair and every sleepless night.
The day that I recently stopped buying diapers probably is one of the best days of my life. But then that means they'll be teenagers shortly, which is probably even more expensive.
Mmmm... that post made me teary. We're considering retiring the high-chair 'round these parts too. I've got the hardest time getting my head around it.
It's great to see your non-Dean side.

Now the morning snark: shift that diaper money into the fund for college and the first teenage car insurance payment!
"That phase of our lives will be over."

What, you don't expect to have grandchildren?

Believe me, they come along sooner than you expect.
The long days, short years comment is so dead cert true. Just reading it makes my stomach knot up. How many short years of long days have already passed with my children...

But the trappings of babyhood: diapers, high chairs, lugging a diaper bag, I'm not missing those.

I enjoy your insightful writing. I'm an online biology instructor for two community colleges and I love it. It's very interesting to read your administrative point of view. Please keep it up!
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