”If you’re alone, I’ll be your shadow. If you want to cry, I’ll be your shoulder. If you want a hug, I’ll be your pillow. If you need to be happy, I’ll be your smile… But anytime you need a friend, I’ll just be me.”
What a very special weekend we had! On Saturday, we packed everyone in the car and went to the park. This might not sound like a great feat but when you are hauling an 81-year-old woman and a 21 month old, it is quite the task. Aunt Gene, the 81-year-old woman, seemed to really enjoy the fresh air and adventure. She had been stuck in the house all week-long and it was a joy to get her out for a short while. She’s doing so good since moving in with us. I was worried about how we would all adjust to another member of the household but my worries were for nothing. Everyone has adjusted easily and she fits right in. It’s a blessing to be able to have her with us and I love that we are a bigger family now.
At the park, my son refused to slide or swing or anything besides sit on the bench and watch the traffic go by. He was in an odd mood. Not sure why but he simply didn’t want to play at that time. So we didn’t stay long but left there and went to eat at Shoney’s. After that, I took him to a 2 year old’s birthday party where, again, he was not interested in playing. Well, let me back up. He was not interested in bouncing in the bounce house. What he was interested in doing was playing with the pedal tractor and wagon. This little boy is obsessed with tractors and wagons! Of course this might have something do to with his Papaw having a tractor! Well, he was in luck on Saturday! The birthday boy’s Papaw had a real tractor and offered to take us for a ride. We happily accepted! My son was in HEAVEN!!!! LOL It was a good day.
He spent the night with his Papaw and Nana on Saturday night, then I picked him up Sunday morning for church. We tool Aunt Gene to church with us too and she seemed to enjoy that as well. It was a really great weekend!
Here it is Monday morning and time for the rat race! But I will not worry about all the problems ahead of me at work. I will rest my mind on the Lord and know that He will enable me to do good work. I’m so blessed and so thankful that I know the Lord as my personal savior. Without Him I can do nothing. I pray that He will guide me and be with me all day every day. God bless all who happen upon these words. Amen!
As we fast approach the holidays, Thanksgiving Day will be here first. This is a day which reminds me to count all my blessings. Although I try to be mindful of all my blessings each day, the hustle and bustle of routines and deadlines interfere with this thought process. I forget to take a moment and just reflect upon all I have, not material things but those things that tug at the heart-strings. One of those is my relationship with my mother.
My mom is my best friend. She is my son’s Mamaw, whom he adores! She has spent her entire life making sure I was well taken care of and continues to worry over me even though I am a grown woman, fully capable of caring for myself. I never understood the love she has for me until I became a mother. I thought I knew but, looking back, I didn’t have a clue. The love a mother has for her child is beyond description. It comes from the deepest part of the soul and is pure and beautiful in form. I am so thankful to have been blessed with the kind of mother who values family and God above all else. Material possessions come and go as easy as the wind. But the bonds and ties of a close-knit family endure a lifetime.
My mother has taught me how to be a mother to my son. She continues to teach me about what truly matters in life and I pray that I have her in my life as a teacher for many years to come.
She is the first person I run to for advice. She is the first person I call to share good news (or bad news) with. If I forget the last ingredient in a recipe, yes you guessed it, I call her. I go to her for everything. She is my mother. But sixteen months ago she took on a new and even more important title. She was crowned my son’s “Mamaw”. The relationship that’s growing between her and my son holds more magic in it than all of Disney and MGM put together. It’s better than a weekend full of sappy Lifetime movies mixed in with a little Barney and some Wiggles. My heart leaps almost out of my chest with joy when I see my mother’s face light up brighter than the Fourth-of-July in the simple presence of my son.
Since having “my little miracle”, the relationship between me and my mom has taken a new and better direction. We are closer and relate to each other more than ever before. It’s as if we were just introduced to each other for the first time the day of his birth. Perhaps I am the one who has changed the most, resulting in a deepened and humbled respect for her as a mother and a woman. I am in awe of the absolutely incredible job she did in raising me and my brother. In retrospect, I do not know how she managed at times.
When I was 12 (and my brother was 4), my parents divorced. My mother did not even have her high school diploma at that time, but she was determined to be able to support us on her own. She obtained her G.E.D. and went to nursing school. I remember seeing her studying a lot during that time but she never allowed it to interfere with her role as a mother. She managed to care for us flawlessly (cook, clean, do laundry, etc) and earn excellent grades in unison. She graduated as an L.P.N. within one year (an accelerated program). She went on to have a very successful career in the medical field and we (me & my brother) never lacked for anything. She maintained and re-enforced the value of the family by keeping a respectful relationship with our dad. She attended our school functions. She spent quality time with us. She was everything a mother should be while still devoting a lot of time and energy to her career. If there is some sort of award for “super-mom” out there, this woman deserves it!
Now, it’s her turn to relax and soak up all of the love a toddler has to offer. I am honored to be a part of this. She continues to amaze me with her capacity to love and care. My son is a very lucky boy to have her as his Mamaw. And I am a very lucky woman to have her as my Mom.
“A mother becomes a true grandmother the day she stops noticing the terrible things her children do because she is so enchanted with the wonderful things her grandchildren do.” ~Lois Wyse
And there he goes, onward bound without even as much as a glance backwards at his mommy. At 16 months of age, his desire for independence is already peeking through (to put it mildly). He doesn’t want me to hold his hand or climb the steps with him. No, he wants to do it all by himself. Where is the “dislike” button for this? “Wait for me,” I beg. “Wait for mommy,” I plead to no avail. The strong desire to “do it on his own” has unraveled me a little. I want him to “need” me. I need him to need me. In a sense, I feel like a love-struck teen age girl chasing after the love of her life. He certainly has me wrapped around his little finger just the same.
I don’t have to ask. I know it’s only going to get worse. He’s going to continue to grow and demand more and more independence. He’s going to need me less and less. And my heart is going to break over and over. I thought I knew what being a mother was all about before I became one. I thought being a mother meant giving bottles, changing diapers, cooking dinner, cleaning, doing laundry, saying yes and mostly saying no. I never factored the emotional equation into motherhood. Sure, I always heard the old saying, “when they’re young, they’ll walk on your toes, but when they’re older, they’ll walk on your heart.” I thought I was safe at least until he turned 16.
An article on Parents’ website refers to this as a <a href=”“>”Toddler’s Declaration of Independence”. The article goes on to describe how my son, as a toddler, is attempting to balance “what he wants to do with what he can do,” and how this is an internal battle for him. I had not really considered this aspect of the power struggle and corresponding temper tantrums until now. Although I doubt it will calm my nerves at the onset of these occurrences, it does give me better insight and understanding of how his little brain operates. (Bless his heart!) Seriously, it must be tough trying to remember that he can’t touch the hot cup of coffee but he can touch the cup of juice. There are so many things to learn and understand that of course there are going to be moments of frustration and struggles between parent and child. However, this “declaration of independence” should have come with a warning label, “may cause excessive weeping and/or screaming”. I’m not ready to begin “letting go” at such an early age. But, ready or not, there he goes.
UPDATE: I just read an incredible post about cultivating a kind, gentle voice. It’s funny how often I’m led to just the right post at just the right time. Considering how much my patience has been tested as a direct result of my toddler’s new found independence, I desperately needed to read this!