Monday, May 22, 2006

Let Me Hold You Longer

This is one of my favorite kid's books.
I will sometimes read it when I'm having
a rough day with my kids.

Long ago you came to me,
A miracle of firsts:
First smiles and teeth and baby steps,
a sunbeam on the burst.
But one day you will move away
and leave to me your past,
And I will be left thinking of
a lifetime of your lasts...

The last time that I held a bottle
to your baby lips.
The last time that I lifted you
and held you on my hip.

The last night when you woke up crying,
needing to be walked.
When last you crawled up with your blanket,
wanting to be rocked.

The last time when you ran to me,
still small enough to hold.
The last time that you said you'd marry
me when you grow old.
Precious, simple moments from your past -
Would I have held on longer if
I'd known they were your last?

Our last adventure to the park,
your final midday nap,
The last time when you wore your favorite
faded baseball cap.

Your last few hours of kindergarten,
those last days of first grade,
Your last at bat in Little League,
last colored picture made.

I never said good-by to all
your yesterdays long passed,
So what about tomorrow-
will I recognize your lasts?

The last time that you catch a frog
in that old backyard pond.
The last time that you run barefoot
across our fresh-cut lawn.
Silly, scattered images
will represent your past.
I keep on taking pictures,
never quite sure of your lasts...

The last time that I comb your hair
or stop a pillow fight.
The last time that I pray with you
and tuck you in a night.
The last time when you cuddle
with a book, just me and you.
The last time you jump in our bed
and sleep between us two.

The last piano lesson,
last vacation to the lake.
Your last few weeks of middle school,
last soccer goal you make.

I look ahead and dream of days
that haven't come to pass.
But as I do, I sometimes miss
today's sweet, precious lasts...

The last time that I help you with
a math or a spelling test.
The last time when I shout that yes,
your room is still a mess.
The last time that you need me for
a ride from here to there.
The last time that you spend the night
with your old tattered bear.

My life keeps moving faster,
stealing precious days that pass,
I want to hold on longer -
want to recognize your lasts...

The last time that you need my help
with details of a dance.
The last time that you ask me for
advice about romance.

The last time that you talk to me
about your hopes and dreams,
The last time that you wear a jersey
for your high school team.

I've watched you grow and barely noticed
seasons as they pass.
If I could freeze the hands of time,
I'd hold on to your lasts.

For come some bright fall morning,
you'll be going far away.
College life will beckon
in a brilliant sort of way.
One last hug, one last good-bye,
one quick and hurried kiss.
One last time to understand
just how much you'll be missed.
I'll watch you leave and think how fast
our time together passed.

Let me hold on longer, God, to every precious last!!

Written by Karen Kingsbury

6 comments:

theresa said...

The whole time I'm reading this I'm glad, I'm sad and thinking for you...you can always have a third? Smiles to you!!

Aunt Julie said...

Wow!
Never Seen this one!
I LOVE IT...
I can see why you do too!!!

Susie said...

So true...the moments pass so quickly! Cherish each one!
Love,
Mom

Jim and Joy said...

I absolutely love this book. It was given to me when I was pregnant with Arika, I cry every time I read this book!

Praying for your Prodigal said...

O.k...typing through my tears! Let Me Hold You Longer....is the name? I'm checking out Amazon.com right now!

Thanks for posting this!

Diane

Sherry said...

I agree with Theresa you can have a third to go through all that too. Love ya.
Sherry