In my house, we tend to repeat things well beyond the time it is useful. The problem is, we laugh about those repeated things again and again, so they become funny. Two out of three of my children appreciate that and one does not. He did leave for college and has a new appreciation for home and and has been mocking my NY accent, so he is coming around.
Since yesterday was Mother's day, this post is about kids growing up and leaving. My last child left for college last September, but I had the good fortune of having my daughter move home. Now those of you who I talked to every day, probably won't see it that way and I must admit, I rode her hard and I was out of line. That child was sure of her dreams and goals and I had no patience as she was "masters prepared engineer" and needed to get a job in an engineering firm and start her life. The link below will lead you to her blog and if you take a minute to understand her...you will agree, I was out of line.
At the time, I was doing what I thought was right because that's what I did. I got a job right out of college, looked for a husband that would be an awesome father and wanted to start my life. I didn't put a whole lot of thought into caring for people...I mean, I was a nurse and wasn't that enough? I thought so.
March 4th, 1992, my daughter came into the world after I thought I knew exactly the right way to live my life and how I would raise her. Funny thing is, she raised me. She was a miracle to behold and like I have said in other musings, she changed me...my life plan...and who I wanted to be. I wanted to be someone that this kid looked up to and I wanted to make sure that she knew she could do anything she wanted and that she was loved. Jim and I would eat dinner with her in her "bouncy" seat and marvel at the miracle that our genes had created. Not because she was the perfect child (although we thought she was) but because we had this human being to raise.
As time went on, I decided that there was nothing more important to me than being a mother. I had my second child on a Friday the 13th in May with my dear college friend and Jim coaching me on. I brought him home and the first thing my oldest did was ask to "pet" him. True to form, she became his mentor, the person who told him what to do and how to do it and his biggest fan. While I was exhausted with two little ones, I was over the moon that I had the privilege of being their mother.
The last one came out of nowhere. My mother passed away in February of 1996, I was 31 years old and next thing I knew, another one was on the way. ( I guess you call that being comforted!) Because he was a "surprise" if there is really such a thing, I didn't get ready for a baby until a week or two before he was due. Maybe, I thought, if I didn't get ready, I wouldn't have 3 kids under 5.
Thanksgiving came and went and old Howie, didn't show. I even had my father in law and sister in law staying with us to watch the other two because it was getting close. He came on a Sunday morning after church in a hurry and was a strapping 10 pound dude. He completed our family and I stayed home with him while Jim took the two other little ones to cut down our christmas tree. In my mind, there was nothing better than three little ones at christmas time.
But, now, 20 years later, there is. To watch my oldest live her life volunteering for the Peace Corps in Peru and dreaming big...not big with stuff but big with helping people is a dream come true for me.
For my middle guy teaching in an inner city school trying to help 6th graders with math and coaching baseball...just hanging with the fellas hoping to make a difference by loving kids makes me loud and proud.
For the "surprise" child, he watched quietly and took in the life decisions the other two made and began to make his own. This summer, this guy will spend it in service for the whole summer in Juarez, Mexico building houses.
So I send them off...All with plans that are so different than mine. They have plans to serve, to love and to try to make the world a better place with kindness and service. They humble me and force me to be a better person.
Yesterday was Mother's day and I spent it with my boys. We hiked and talked about when they were little. They remember the things I did right and all the things I did wrong. But, they still made time to hang out with their "motha". I cannot tell you how lucky I feel.
As we sat at the brewery, (I picked that for dinner because I'm the Motha), and watched them banter about memories and listen to them gush about how proud they are of their sister...I could not have asked for a nicer mother's day. You see, they have taught me more than I can convey and they have given more joy than any one person deserves. And most of all, when I ask them to do something and they ask me why...and I reply, "Because I'm the Motha" they laugh and do what I ask!
We'll tawk tomorrow,
I love you all,