Let’s Do the Time Warp Again: How the TimeHop App Turned Me Into An Emotional Disaster

About 6 months ago I decided to download the Timehop app to my iPhone. It seemed harmless. It seemed fine. Some of my virtual friends seemed to only exist in a sea of flashbacks and #tbts.image

For the first few weeks, Timehop was pretty darn lame. A drunken post to a friend’s wall from 9 years ago (because college). A artsy Instagram pic of a flower. Some other random lame-o things.

Then. The baby pictures came.

So. Many. Baby. Pictures.

Pictures I hadn’t remembered. Pictures of my Walker with his crazy little crossed 6 month old baby eyes before we found out he needed glasses. walker

Pictures of my now dapper 5 year old Maddox as a wispy haired chubby potato looking toddler eating his feet. maddox

And the VIDEOS. OH MY LORD THE VIDEOS KILL ME DEAD! Those sweet little baby voices telling me that an octopus lived on the TV and made it “wet wet wet!” It was heartwarming and heartbreaking all at the same time.

You guys. I think this app may be the last straw in my already fragile mommy-who-can’t-handle-her-kids-getting-larger mental state. (“Oh who is that crazy person?” My kids’ friends will ask them. “That’s just mom. She talks to the dust flying through the air now that Timehop finally did her in. Just walk past her. She’s harmless” my teenage children will say). Because every chubby pork chop toddler foot I see, every neckless baby chunk I come across, makes me realize these years are FLYING by. Like. Warped light ninja Star Wars speed times infinity.

These two human people I have been put in charge of are growing and living life. It’s enough to make me want to reach for the bottle at 7am.

For the last 5 years I have felt like I was being pushed under water. Held there, kicking and gasping for air and wondering how the heck I am going to do all the things a mother is supposed to do. And if I’m going to do them well enough to spare my children from adulthood eye rolls and the exasperation of a childhood that was just kind of fine. But then, I came to the surface and you know what? I was only underwater for a nano second. Because Timehop reminds me over and over that these tiny infant and toddler years seem SO IMPOSSIBLE while we are all up in the middle of them. And then they’re gone.

I’m not going to be that lady. The blue hair at the grocery store who tells you to “enjoy every moment” as your kids are using the pasta aisle shelves as a ladder and dumping Kraft Mac and Cheese onto each other’s heads while fist fighting. (Not that MY KIDS have done that very thing, I’ve just heard of other slightly more feral children than mine who have… Or something…) Every single last moment is not enjoyable. No one has pulled an entire stuffed animal out of a toilet and thought “gee this was a riveting and grand use of my time/energy/brain and I want to repeat this always.” I get that. Sometimes, I call my kids terrorists. I’m here with you, friend. In the trenches. Just trying to feed all the people who insist on eating meals every day and keep everyone alive.

But in the middle of this chaos there are beautiful moments that I would repeat a million times if I could. And every morning before I do anything else, I Timehop and my heart gets all full and all wrung out at the same time. And I feel sad and happy and grateful and just so many things. Because if Timehop is any indication whatsoever of the past, of those doggone infant to toddler years that made me group text other mothers for the acceptable time in the day to start drinking (FYI the answer depends on the exact day and on how much grace your group text friends give out), I think we are all going to shake out okay. Honestly and for real. Maybe we aren’t screwing up as much as we think we are.

And in all those stolen moments of sea shell collecting and pumpkin picking and birthday parties and milestones and firsts, I get to see 5+ years lived well. Not perfectly, but well. And so full of love.

And then I run into my kids’ rooms and stare at them as if they are dying right that minute and act like a neurotic weepy fool and sometimes Maddox wakes up in the middle of it all and calls me a freak and asks for his allergy meds. So. It’s fine. It’s whatever. I’m super casual and stuff. No worries.

Thanks Timehop.

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