The Last Day of My Life


Today is the last day of my life that I’ll have a newborn and a 4 year old, and a 5 year old, and 6 year old.

I want to remember.

Tomorrow Isaac turns 7, and Monday he went with me to the dentist and rocked Titus in his car seat while explaining to me and the hygienist that amphibians can breathe through their skin. He rattled on, rocking, wearing two left flip-flops of two different colors. He’s the little boy version of a nutty professor, and he loves the nut in me.

Yesterday I took all 4 to Walmart, and I lost Ian and started hollering at everybody in the store to find my baby before I realized Isaac was laughing at me and pointing to the cart. Yeah. Ian was just sitting right there, admiring how I might freak out if he went missing. An old man laughed right in my face, and I snarled at the poor feller.

 

Ian wants to be heard. His voice is beautiful. He loves story, and he has the gift of storytelling. One day he’ll memorize poetry and wait for the perfect moment to quote it. He’ll get a great kick out of seeing lumps grow in people’s throats. He’ll add details to make the story better, but he’ll care for his fiction. He’ll tell great truths with it. (And other than that, I do believe he’ll become a great cake maker.)

Jude thinks he knows the entire plan for his life, says he’s going to marry Anna Mason and have nine babies, though this morning he confessed it might not happen because last night he asked her to move out from in front of the television, and she didn’t. Love will become unfickle for him as he gets older and learns to believe that we love him no matter what. His learning is genuine. Jude is no fake.

He still likes to wear his underwear up under his armpits, but he laughs about it. He’s so sensory, but has finally been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. This isn’t surprising because when I was 7, I was diagnosed with the same thing. We are achingly similar. So young to think of such ancient things, we hold it all up for examination, prone to distrust, learning as we can to hold all to the light.

I’m getting to know them. Even now I’m watching Titus love abandon.

He nurses, drinks the milk like it’s neverending, like bottles and sippy cups are no such things. He relaxes all the way into me. If he fusses, I take out into the wind that tunnels by our door. He’ll have a motorcycle as soon as he gets out from under my roof. And he’ll never wreck it, but for moments at a time, he might close his eyes while driving.

Today is the last day of my life that I’ll have lesson 38 of 1st grade math to teach to Isaac or that I’ll call and ask for a 4 year wellness appointment for Ian. Today I should get out the 3-6 month clothes for Titus, and I should get Jude to draw the Incredible Hulk one more time as he’s transitioning on to greater heroes.

Is today the last day of your life that you’ll ever get to do something, a little, great thing?

amberhaines
About me

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46 Comments

moxiemandie
Reply October 13, 2011

I don't really have the words to say what this post means to me, but I have the tears that feel it & that you cannot see, just have to trust. Love this (& you) so much.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    mandie, you always encourage.

carissa
Reply October 13, 2011

i found your blog from emily at chatting at the sky. love her and now you. : )

this is precious. your boys are beautiful, i mean, er, handsome.

there's so much to savor, sometimes i don't know where to start. last week i was playing with my two year old son and one year old daughter and this hit me: they will never be as little as they are today. then i sobbed.

    carissa
    Reply October 13, 2011

    i totally screwed up my link above.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Don't you absolutely adore Emily? When I'm with her I have to keep myself from sitting in her lap.

Linda
Reply October 13, 2011

I love how you've captured the beauty in the everyday, the now, and I can joyfully look around at my own life and see the preciousness of the ones I share this time and space with.

Sometimes I treat time as if it's frozen though, becoming burdened by the daily challenges instead of realizing the gifts in these chapters; every moment we breathe life along with our little ones is truly a gift.

Thank you Amber for sharing your gift with us! : )

Many blessings on you and your darling family.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Thank you, Linda. You're so right, too. Time is moving so quickly.

Amy
Reply October 13, 2011

Oh, I just love how you show the amazingness of everyday life. It makes me so happy and sad all at the same time when I think about how no day will ever be like the one before.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Makes me happy and sad too, Amy.

Sarah@EmergingMummy
Reply October 13, 2011

How, how, how is this not sitting in a book of poetry on my shelf? Darling, publish and I'll dogear the pages and underline paragraphs of your words.

    Angela
    Reply October 14, 2011

    I feel the same way...

    Carrie&Troy
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Amen! Thanks for the nap time smiles, my friend!
    Carrie

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Stuff like this makes me think that maybe I can.

    One day?

    thank you, friends.

cassie O.
Reply October 13, 2011

This is exactly where I have been in these last few days. I have told my daughter over and over again that I need another hug. "I only have 2 more days of my entire life to have 3 yr. old hugs from my favorite girl in the whole wide world!"
I watched the pregnant new momma at Bible Study last night and longed to have just one more of the day she was having..... I would love to go back and cherish the aching back, the chair I just couldn't get comfortable in because I was different than the rest, I had amazing miracles being knitted inside of me.
P.S. I ditto what Sarah said!

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    That's what I'm afraid of. I never want to look back and accuse myself of not relishing.

McKt
Reply October 13, 2011

Such beauty in these fleeting moments. Thanks for the reminder.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Thanks for coming here, McKt.

Elizabeth
Reply October 13, 2011

1. You are absolutely beautiful, even more so with those gorgeous boys at your side and in your arms. Lucky mama, lucky boys.

2. I will not go into detail, but reading through your blog ministers to me about something I'm struggling with. Thank you for your honesty and eloquence, Amber.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Elizabeth, thank you for this.

Erika
Reply October 13, 2011

That photo, those boys, your words . . . SUCH fine art.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Erika, i never knew art till my boys.

Elizabeth Esther
Reply October 13, 2011

I just spent like three hours reading through a bunch of old posts on your site today. I don't know why. I needed your words today. Thank you for being here. Love to you....

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Elizabeth, maybe I needed you to need me. Love to you, too. I'm with you.

Jessica Y
Reply October 14, 2011

Amber, That picture is just beyond awesome to me.

Carolyn
Reply October 14, 2011

The poetry of your family just being a family is fascinating to me.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    The poetry of my family just being a family. I guess it's fascinating to me, too.

    I have a history of believing I would never have good. So looking at the good, it makes me jaw-dropped.

    I wish I acted out the gratitude I feel while I'm writing.

Carissa
Reply October 14, 2011

Oh you have tears threatening to spill down my face...

Carissa
Reply October 14, 2011

Oh, and ironically, yesterday was the last day of my life that I'd have just a 10-month-old... he is 11 months today

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    So fast, Carissa, like all the grannies say. I'm totally seeing it now.

kendal
Reply October 14, 2011

today is the last day i'll speak at mom's book club and the last day i'll have fall break with those trees beside our house because we're cutting them down to put in fruit trees and it's the last day i'll drive up the mountain to see my boy play football in west jefferson and i think yesterday was the last day i will be afraid to write eveything, everything down.

i love love love this post.

Rae
Reply October 14, 2011

Oh you bless us. Thanks for sharing the ways your boys bless you.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    Thanks for encouraging me, Rae.

Juanita
Reply October 14, 2011

I also am a mom to four boys and wife to a master guitar playing worshipper!
Today is the day after 4 birthdays in 18 days. My sons are significantly taller than yours now 21,20,18 and 16. I stumbled across your blog today from twitter.
I know the joy of the living each day with the wonder. I still do. Thanks for this today.

    Amber
    Reply October 14, 2011

    When I read the ages of your sons, my tummy dropped to my toes. I can't even contain it, and I know it's long from now.

    I don't want to miss it.

    Thank you for visiting here, Juanita.

We are THAT family
Reply October 14, 2011

This was so beautiful, I yearned for four boys of my own as I read it. Love you.

Country Wife
Reply October 14, 2011

Lovely!

Kristen@Chasing Blue Skies
Reply October 14, 2011

Oh girl, your writing gift grows by the moment. I adore your words, your heart, your wisdom! xoxo

    Amber
    Reply October 15, 2011

    Thank you Kristen. I hope I see you soon.

Anita
Reply October 17, 2011

Every year with every on of my four sons, on the night before their birthdays I made sure to get my very last hug from '4 year old Douglas', my very last kiss from '9 year old Luc', as they grew older it had to be me giving my very last hug or kiss to 14 or 17 year old Jesse or Jacob. Just a few weeks back I had my last day ever of sons living full time at home ( I think) ... Finding the treasures of today is challenging but worth it - And now I will go visit with my 3rd son (now 23) who just popped in on his way to his own first home! and maybe he'll not only let me hug and kiss him but give me a couple back!

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