My toddler is breaking my back
It’s very sweet that you want to be attached to me at all times. I know that you’re happiest when I’m holding you in my arms within grabbing distance of my hair. I like making you happy. It’s my most important job in life.
But here’s the thing, Popple:
My back is f***ed.
It’s not entirely your fault. My back has always been somewhat f***ed. First of all, I have mild scoliosis. This means that means that my spine has a weird sideways curve, giving me the tiniest of hunchbacks. Second of all, I’ve been doing desk-based jobs for more than 12 years. That’s 12 years of leaning over a computer for eight hours a day while sitting in a crappy office chair.
That being said, my back has been particularly f***ed lately, and it’s because you’re getting so huge. I never thought I’d say this, my little 2nd percentile baby, but you are freaking heavy. I’m sure you’re still petite compared to your peers, but you feel like a big, fat chunk of a toddler to me. I have no idea how much you weigh. All I know is that every day, my arms strain a little bit more when I pick you up, and my back hurts a little bit more ALL THE TIME. It never stops. There’s constant ache in my upper back that ranges from mild discomfort to the stabby kind of pain that travels from my shoulders up into my head and settles behind my eyes until the resulting headache makes me puke.
I hate to say this, Popple, but I’m not sure how much longer you can maintain your status as my cutest and squirmiest appendage. It may be the next pound you put on, or maybe the pound after, but at some point by my body just won’t be able to do it anymore. You will reach up for me expectantly and I’ll have to say, “Sorry, Popple – Mama can’t pick you up.”
It will break my heart, but continuing to carry you will break my back. And I need my back. It’s kind of a crucial piece of my whole body setup.
Just know that when this day comes, it doesn’t mean that I don’t want you close. I want you with me always, just not, you know, on me necessarily.
We can still have all the cuddles from a comfortable seated position. And my hand is always available for holding as we walk along together, ready to face whatever toddlerhood throws at us next.