With Mother’s Day coming up, I couldn’t help but think about what being a mom has meant to me. Also how thankful my husband and I are to still have both of our Mom’s as well as our Dad’s still living and in fairly good health. What a blessing!
There is a poem that every time I read it even when my boys were baby’s it always made me cry. I wanted to have it read at a Mother’s Day banquet one year, but had to have someone else read it. Maybe you’ve heard it before but it’s called “Wet Oatmeal Kisses”.
The baby is teething. The children are fighting. Your husband just called and said, “Eat dinner without me” One of these days you’ll explode and shout to the kids, “Why don’t you grow up and act your age?” And they will.
Or, “You guys get outside and find yourselves something to do. And don’t slam the door!” And they don’t. You’ll straighten their bedrooms all neat and tidy, toys displayed on the shelf, hangers in the closet, animals caged. You’ll yell, “Now I want it to stay this way!” And it will.
You will prepare a perfect dinner with a salad that hasn’t had all the olives picked out and a cake with no finger traces in the icing and you’ll say, “Now THIS is a meal for company.” And you will eat it alone.
You’ll say, “I want complete privacy on the phone. No dancing around, no pantomimes, no demolition crews. Silence! Do you hear?” and you’ll have it. No more plastic tablecloths stained with spaghetti, no more anxious nights under a vaporizer tent, no more dandelion bouquets, no more iron-on patches, wet knotted shoestrings, tight boots, missing mittens, or ponytails falling out.
Imagine, a lipstick with a point, no babysitter, washing clothes only once a week, no parent meetings, carpools, Christmas presents out of toothpicks and paste.
No more wet oatmeal kisses.
No more giggles in the dark, kissing scraped knees, or wiping sticky fingers.
Only a voice asking, “Why don’t you grow up?” and the silence echoing,
Yep, tearing up again! Friends tell me even in high school, that I often talked about wanting to have kids. From the first moment I held each of our boys I just remember being overwhelmingly in love with them. Realizing each one of them was such a precious gift. We know some amazing, wonderful ladies that for reasons we may never know or have any understanding, they were never able to have children of their own. So I never wanted to take being a parent for granted.
While raising three crazy active little boys, the oldest one born blind and the youngest with Asperger’s syndrome. I promise you our house was never dull. I sold real estate for all the years the boys were in school. My schedule could be really insane but it gave me flexibility to see the boys off each morning. I was able to be a room mom for parties at school. I was on almost every field trip they took. I remember as our youngest finished elementary school feeling sad that season was over. I so miss those mornings, when I would have one curled up on my lap with his blanket, another snuggling up against me and the third one close by. Then I see today the young men they have each grown into and again I am overwhelmed by gratefulness. Not that any of them are perfect and they certainly weren’t raised by perfect parents, the Lord knows that!
I cried as each one move out. My husband and I are empty nesters now. I ask one of my fellow empty nesters when one of her kids moved back in “do you cry as hard when they come back as you did when they left?!” She laughed and said “it’s just different.” We are not grandparents yet. I think we always thought by the time our last one moved out we’d probably be grandparents, but that’s ok. Thankfully our friends with grand-babies and our neighbors with young ones, let us love on their precious little ones.
I know some of you young parents are still in the thick of it. Some of you are a single parent, possibly not by choice. Then some of you with adult children are going through some really tough things. God sees you when no one else seems to. In Matthew 11:28 Come to me those who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest! Mom’s hang in there, you are the back bone in most families. Make sure you are getting some “me” time! Also keep a couple of those awesome girlfriends close, to do this journey with you!