|“Dark Shadows,” courtesy Warner Brothers|
~ ~ ~
I had a wonderful Mother’s Day, spent in the way I wanted – quality time with my dear daughter. She’s nine now and we’re still tight. I hope it lasts but I remember how the teen years saw me drift away from my own mother. Can you relate?
I recently penned a short story in honor of Mother’s Day. It appeared as a guest post on another blog but I thought I’d share it here with my readers. Comments are always welcome.
thing you see is her face. You love nothing more than looking at that face. You
don’t yet have the words to define what you see. Al you know is that you feel
happier when she casts her eyes on yours; that when her lips curl up at the
sides it makes your lips curl up too – and that feels nice.
stepping off the bus and you feel rotten inside. There’s never been a worse
unpacked your backpack and realized you’d forgotten to pack your math homework.
Then at lunch your so-called best friend didn’t save you a seat and you had to
sit alone. Things went downhill after that. Josh’s usual teasing in art class made
you want to punch him or cry, but you don’t do either.
days you wish she wouldn’t hover. You’re a big kid now, not three. But that
day, it feels kinda nice to know that she
knows you’ve had a miserable day before you even say anything. She hugs you
tight and lets you tell her all about it. By dinner she has somehow managed to
make you forget it was the worst day ever in the history of days.
closed, but she’s knocking on it. Can’t she see you don’t want to talk? Doesn’t
she get that door closed means “leave me alone?” you’re not in third grade
anymore. Maybe she used to be able to make it all better with a hug, but this
isn’t something that gets better with a hug and a cookie. She wouldn’t
to be alone.”
footsteps retreat down the hall. “Thank God!” you think as you cry out your
heartache into your pillow. You don’t know that she is in her room, crying her
heartache out into her pillow.
at her one day, then curling into her lap to watch T.V. with her the next. It’s
like sometimes looking at that face that used to make everything feel right
just reminds you of everything that’s wrong. It feels like that more and more.
you see her face and her eyes look like they could melt you like sugar in the
rain. And on those days, you want nothing more than to have her hug you and
stroke your hair and tell you it will be okay. And some days you let her.
stairs and so help you, if she cries one more tear you’re going to lock her
out! You see her biting her lip and sucking in a breath. She’s fighting back
tears. Good! This is supposed to be a happy day. You’ve earned your freedom.
You’re taking your first big step to independence. Doesn’t she want you to be
independent? Isn’t that a good thing? Why is she crying all the time? Probably
hormones. “Shoot me if I’m ever a mess like that,” you think.
hand and posing for pictures with your friends. She’s snapping the camera and
smiling a lot. You can see in her eyes that she’s proud of you. Knowing she’s
proud and happy for you makes you feel warm inside. You wouldn’t admit it to
anybody, but you’re glad she’s proud. She’s not blubbering today like the day
she dropped you off on campus the first time, but you see her mist up a few
times. You notice a few more grey hairs at her temples. Are there more lines
around her eyes than the last time you saw her? She comes over and hugs you and
you let her. You even hug her back, real tight.
feels like black lava licking right up through your shoes. Your husband holds
your hand (too tight for your liking) as you waddle through the doors of the
hospital to check in.
when you see her head poke into the room. In that moment, you can’t imagine why
you ever pushed her away. Even the man you adore with all your heart can’t take
her place today. She puts her warm, soft hand on your forehead and you feel an
immediate calm come over you.
smiles down at you and you look up into her twinkling eyes. There’s something
there – almost a memory. You look in her eyes and you believe her. “I can do
this,” you say.
Everyone’s gone now. It’s just you and your little one. She lays in your arms
sleeping. So small. So fragile.
around your pinkie in a grip that feels too strong for such a tiny creature.
You look down at the angelic face cradled in your arms and even though you just
met her, you love her more than you knew you could love. It’s a love so
powerful and so deep that it hurts.
going to cry like an idiot when you’re moving boxes to her new place. You see
it all like a movie going fast motion in your head. You’ll want to wail and
hold onto her but you know you won’t. You’ll let her go, just like your mama
let you go. And you know in that instant it will hurt more than any hurt you’ve
fall, you don’t want anyone to shoot you for it. You’re a mother now. Tears