Blog | Lindsey Smallwood


I Don't Want to Forget

Lindsey Smallwood

At Middle Places this month, we're ReCounting - preparing our hearts for Thanksgiving by taking time to remember. Today I'm holding on to sticky fingers and chubby-cheeked smiles... 

I’ve been feeling schmoopy this week.

That’s the word my husband and I use when we feel sentimental and all overflowing with a gushy kind of love.

I keep looking at my kids – two boys ages 1 and 2 – and feeling sad that some day they’re going to grow up and leave home. I am enjoying this season so much and the thought that someday they’ll be big giant men who don’t need me makes my heart wilt a little.

Jen Hatmaker keeps telling me that teenagers are fun too. Carol, our MOPS mentor mom, told our group of mothers-of-preschoolers that her favorite season of parenting has been having adult children. So I’m trying to believe them and know that I’ll enjoy what comes next too, but oh, the cheeks! The lisps! The cuddles! It all seems so exquisite right now.

The other night as we were reading bedtime stories to the boys, I leaned over to my husband and said wistfully “We’re going to forget this, you know? These days, they’re all just going to seem like a big blur of diapers and legos and swiffering the floor all the livelong day. We’re going to forget the smiles and the storytimes and the giggles.”

He looked at me thoughtfully.

“Yeah, maybe, “ he replied. “But we’ll have your blog. Don’t you think your writing will help us remember?”

I’ve been turning it over in my head, wondering if he’s right.

I’ve always enjoyed writing, but I started again in earnest in February, during Lent, finding my voice after taking a sabbatical from social media. At first it was a rush, giving voice to stories with no other place to be told, welcoming feedback from friends new and old.

Then it was a personal challenge, writing as a way to grow my skills at the craft, submitting to magazines and websites, working with editors and learning how to revise my work to fit in other contexts.

More recently it’s been a discipline. After a miscarriage last month and a long bout of illness at home, I’ve been fighting exhaustion and some feelings of depression. Writing has been a means of getting in touch with my real self, tuning into the sadness and confusion, rather than trying to drown it out with busyness and Netflix reruns.

In the midst of all of these, it’s been my hope that my writing will be a way to give glory to God, to find Him in the midst of my ordinary life and point to His grace for those who are willing to see.

But maybe in addition to praising God and processing feelings, beyond connecting with people online and growing my skill set, maybe writing is a way of remembering, of chronicling now for someday.

For someday when my babies aren’t babies and life doesn’t look the way it does today anymore.

Their baby books are mostly empty, save a couple locks of hair and their teeny-tiny hospital bracelets. But as I watch them grow, as I watch me grow, as I’m changing and learning, I’m writing it down to remember. I’m recounting today so that it’s gifts and lessons can be cherished for the days to come.

You guys, their little heads smell like heaven and their chubby hands are the most perfect things I’ve ever held.

And I don’t want to forget.


This post originally appeared at Middle Places.