This morning, Tiny came into bed with me. He almost never does, but this morning he felt that I needed a little nursing. For my ailments, you see. I wasn't sure what ailed me, other than a desire for more sleep, but it was obvious I needed reassurance. "Don't worry, Mummy. I am right here."

Soon he'd found a random towel to keep my bare arm warm, he'd judiciously meted out a small dose of kisses, and read me a book (which consisted of him flicking through the pages silently, looking at the pictures). All the while, I lay there looking at him. Looking, looking, drinking in that very moment with the tight knowledge that it was slipping away with every ticked second.

While he chatted away comfortingly, with doses of cautionary advice—"Remember, mosquitos can bite."— I tried to drink in every curve of his cheek, his perfect skin, his face in thoughtful repose. What ailed me, I realised, is what ails us all, the relentlessness of the present moment. Not the burden it carries—that has its own unique challenges—but the fact that it keeps taking you away from the moment before, the one just passed, the one that you'd only just started to enjoy, to see the enormity of, the beauty, the wonder. It has gone, as has the one before it, and so the one to come. What Tiny didn't know is that what often ails me is the helpless desire to have this moment forever. Even though it has already gone.

I know I am not the first person to think these thoughts. (Although they are so much more profound when you think them, no?) I am actually quite aware that there are whole spiritual traditions that help us think this stuff through. It's just that, sometimes you need to say it out aloud. Sometimes you need to say, despite my quest to flow seamlessly with the river of life, sometimes, when you're right in the middle of watching your own little human becoming the little human he is, you just want to grab an overhanging branch and hold on for dear life. Just to stop for a second and hold it all awhile.

Except you can't. Or should that be--accept I can't.

In the middle of days that are full, exhausting, boring, joyful, funny, exquisite, painful, we often look at each other, my OTL and I, in recognition. For as ordinary and everyday as it all inevitably is—the couch does smell of pee, after all—it is also simply breathtaking.

We are caught between this moment—its practical needs, its joys, its frustrations—and the knowledge it is going. Some days I take photos. It gives me the brief illusion of having control over the flow of that river. They are no overhanging branch, but they are at least a place to pause long after the moment has gone.

These photos: High on Tiny's list of Fantastic Things To Do at the moment is to make popsicles from oranges, wait interminably for them to "get solid", and then eat them in the way that all three year olds do, completely in the moment.

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