Thursday, January 18, 2007

Then and Now

Just a few pictures to remind me how very fast time passes.

Elisabeth then

Elisabeth now(ish)

Peter then

Peter now(ish)

Aleks and Kat then (yes, we have pictures each of them alone, but I so love the ones of them together!)
and Kat now

We had four children within five and a half years. At one point, we had three in diapers, two nursing, one still using a bottle, three with pacifiers, and all four at home with me all day. I have never worked that hard (nor will I ever again, no matter how demanding my job career), nor have I ever felt that fulfilled. During those years, I barely ever got a moment to myself... and yet I was well aware how lucky we were to have four active, bright, loving children and I will always look at those years as the happiest of my life.

These days, with Elisabeth on her own, Peter and Danelle basically living together, and Kat and Aleks each with jobs and busy social lives, I never know who will home in the evenings. Sometimes all seven of us miraculously end up at home for dinner together and sometimes it's just Tom and me -- and I rarely have any advance notice as to who will be home and who won't... which makes dinner time around here quite interesting! (When I do cook -- only a few times a week these days -- it's usually easily expandable as well as easily "leftover-able!)

I know that I could never have a career and a job like I do now if I still had four small kids at home, and I'm grateful that I was able to come back to my career after seven years at home with kids. But I'd never have done it any differently. I simply couldn't have worked when the kids were very small, and I'm so glad I didn't. No matter how much I love my career now (and I do), I wouldn't have traded those years at home for anything in the world. Those years define who I am to the core; these years define where I am in the timeline of my life.

In less than two years we'll be empty nesters. Now THERE'S a scary thought!

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vailian said...

Don't worry about the empty nest, it has its consolations! Especially because even without the kids you wont be bored...

c said...

It isn't really that many years that they are little is it? ..and I agree that it's a wonderful time. It's 'true love' between a little kid and his/her mom (or dad) and you're all so busy with fun stuff.

I think of fostering kids when my one is grown ...but by then I probably will enjoy the freedom an empty nest brings.

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