The mountain of freshly washed clothes are spilling out of the basket. Pant legs twist around their pairs, while socks and shirts cling to one another.
I sigh deeply and begin the long task in front of me, always thankful that I can do this chore while zoning out in front of the television. Not so grateful that my son is now a toddler and life's mission is to make me refold the same shirt 8 times.
Like always I make four distinct piles: mine, Clif's, Ainsley's and Freddie's.
I fold shirts and tuck socks until my wrists and arms are sore, all the while sorting the piles and catching up on the latest episode of Modern Family.
I take each pile to it's respective room and put the clothes in the appropriate drawers.
Ainsley's are last. Mostly shirts, dresses and shorts. But at the bottom of the pile, when all others are put away, I find a lone pair of jeans.
I stop and stare at these little pants and for some reason my eyes well. They're double folded. I hadn't realized when I was folding, but there they sit with two folds instead of one.
I always double fold my and Clif's pants. It keeps them shorter and fitting in the pile neater. But the kids pants? They're already short and small and fit nicely in their piles.
Apparently, not the case anymore. I did it on auto pilot but now they sit, staring at me, reminding me that she's not a baby or toddler anymore. She's a big girl. With tall, lean big girl legs. That only fit in long, double folded big girl pants.
I blink back the dampness in my eyes and scold myself for being so silly. Laundry? I'm getting all emotional about laundry? What is wrong with me?
I pause a moment, wondering if I've missed other things while on auto pilot. This laundry episode has shown me how life can jump. I've watched her grow up for almost 4 years, but all of the sudden these double folded pants make me realize how big she is. I shake the jeans out of their fold and hold them up against my body. Before I know it, she'll be borrowing my clothes.
How has it gone by so fast?
I fold them in half, then over and over again. Double folded. I slip them into the drawer, where they fit perfectly.