{Guest Post} More Hugs, More Kisses

by Alicia Harper 

One weekend recently, I observed Aiden playing with his toys. I usually watch him as he plays, but I’ll be real with you, sometimes it’s more like half watching, half doing something else. But this time, I really watched him.

He picked up his three favorite teddy bears, his Donald Duck, his Elmo, and The Cat In The Hat, “Oohh, the bad guys are coming!” he said to his stuffed animals. “We have to hiiiiddeee!”

“Oh no! Where can we go?” he continued. With them still cuddled in his arms, he jumped onto his bed. “Whew! That was a close one.”

“Ohhh… a ghost!” he went on. “We have to get them outta here!” He picked up The Cat In The Hat, and spun it around and around. Then, there were a series of more sound effects – oohhs and aahhs and uuhhs. Then, “I’m gonna throw you outta here, you ghost!” He threw the “ghost” out of the bedroom, shut the door, and turned to the rest of his stuffed animals declaring “That ghost is NOT coming back!”

Then his voice changed and it became somewhat high-pitched and squeaky as he turned to his dog, “You’re my favorite dog. I’ll protect you from the ghost, okay?!” He gave the dog a hug and a kiss. “Come on, doggie,” he added. And he proceeded to fall on his bed with his favorite dog snuggled tightly.

As I looked at this kid during his pretend play, I couldn’t help but to be amazed. I seriously cannot believe that this is the same little boy that I once held in my arms. The same little boy that I carried inside of me for 9-plus months and gave birth to almost four years ago.

I cannot believe that he no longer needs me to encourage him to engage in pretend play because his imagination is that awesome. I cannot believe how marvelous he has grown. And keeps growing.

Amazing. It’s simply amazing.

He started Pre-Kindergarten a few weeks ago and was ecstatic and nervous and happy to be in “big kid” school all at once. I can’t believe how well he has adjusted and how eloquently he speaks about his day, his teachers, and his friends.

The other day, as we were on our way to visit my sister, walking (we walk or take cabs or public transportation in NYC), Aiden was tired and asked me to lift him up. We hadn’t brought his stroller out with us so I gladly obliged to his request. As I was carrying my big little boy, a lady looked at me and asked, “Isn’t he too big for you to be carrying him?” (When it comes to parenting, New Yorkers always have to share their two-cents.)

Too big? Eh, maybe. But as it always does, time will move us on. And soon Aiden will really be too big for me to carry him. At the end of this month, he’ll turn 4-years-old and it blows my mind that one moment he wasn’t here, and the next moment, after that one. last. push… EXHALE…. he was here. Just like that.

Aiden is like… a real person. Wow!

So at those moments – while he was playing with his stuffed animals, while he was officially becoming a Pre-Kindergartener, and while I was carrying him to my sister’s house – I decided to embrace my little guy. And as I snuggled him tightly, I took a note from Mr. Aiden himself. I said, “You’re my favorite.” And I gave him more hugs and more kisses.


  1. This is super sweet and I don’t blame Alicia for carrying Aiden. I do the same for my little guys since I already know how quickly children grow up. I too take the time to really pay attention to the littlest of things and savor every moment! I am so proud of what a great mommy Alicia is to her boy. He has a great future ahead :-)

  2. Oh how love listening to my kiddos play. It is so amazing what they come up with and I am always in awe. It also provides for a good laugh. I too, carry my children even though they appear too big. It’s funny that I can not lift a 40 lb box but I can lift my children anytime without a problem…amazing.

    • They are so creative and intelligent — it really blows my mind. I often have such problems lifting other things, but when it comes to Aiden, nope. I’ll carry him for days on end when we forget the stroller. And that’s totally fine with me. I’ll do it one hundred times over and it’ll be just fine.

  3. This is so sweet and yes, the time passes too quickly for us not to have moments like this where we reflect and enjoy it. You are such an awesome mom and I bet Aiden is just as amazed by you as you are by him…

  4. This was such an endearing post! As my baby approaches one in a couple of months, it truly does amaze me how quickly has gone. She’s learning and growing in bounds that I couldn’t have anticipated! Each day and moment with them is be cherished and savored.

  5. I have such a short fuse for people’s unsolicited advice or comments on the street! LOL. You are really special and I love reading your reflections on being a mom. It goes so fast, I know…

  6. It DOES go so fast!!!!

    Oh man, if those people who deliver unsolicited advice catch me on a “bad day,” they are usually in for a rude awakening. No pun intended.