I wasn’t sure I wanted to be a mother, but was blessed with two sons more than two decades ago.
When the boys were young, I soon discovered that each day there was something to rejoice about beginning with those early accomplishments like rolling over, blowing bubbles, learning to walk, loosing a tooth, tying a shoe, zippering a jacket, skipping down the road, whistling a tune, or riding a bike without training wheels.
Always, it was traditions that we shared which brought great delight. S and I had a secret hand code that meant “I love you.” P would say, “Ding, ding, snuggle time,” at the end of many meals and climb onto my lap to cuddle.
At bedtime, there was that sense of relief because these two dynamos were finally going to sleep, but special moments occurred each night as we shared important memories of the day with thanksgiving and snuggled some more while reading books.
For P’s first two years, I was convinced he and S were twins. It took me that long to accept that we had two individuals. By looks it was obvious with S’s coarse, curly hair and P’s much finer curls. But there was more.
At age six, S loved science, reading, writing, swimming, mazes, Winnie-the-Pooh, the computer and pretending to be a Private Eye. He constantly planned businesses and designed buildings. S was our organizer and enjoyed figuring out strategies. He was intense with a wonderful sense of humor.
Four-year-old P loved sports, knights in shining armor, super heroes, and dressing as a police officer, fireman, or postman. He loved to tell long, embellished stories. And P learned by observing and taught himself how to ski, skate, and ride a bike. He was quick to smile and loved to joke.
As teenagers, some things had changed. S’s passions included reading, theme parks, roller coasters, computers, Walt Disney, cinematography, geography, research, stocks, and business adventures. He was a member of the honor society, three sports teams, drama club, and Boy Scouts. In addition, S loved to volunteer for our local access cable station where he’d film events as well as work on audio and production. He had grown more intense than ever, but his humor provided a balance.
P’s interests included more sports, writing, drawing, fixing things, playing games, creating meals, playing percussion, yard work, hiking, any outdoor activities, and time spent with family and friends. He had developed a definite sense of justice and he was thoughtful. P participated on three sports teams, drama club, and Boy Scouts. In addition, he and three friends formed a rock band and played at school and community events. He continued to tell great stories and loved a good joke.
As I wandered today, I thought of how proud we are of our sons. After graduating from college with a degree in communications and thinking he was going to work in the newspaper industry, S decided instead to pursue a career dealing with hardware. And for those of you who know, that apple did not fall far from the tree as he has recently returned to town and is in the midst of taking the reins at My Guy’s store.
P also surprised us and chose to major in film, an avenue we thought his brother might have followed. And he has made waves in the film editing business in New York City, a location we never envisioned as being part of his future.
Going back to my story, while carrying S, I remember sharing concerns with other soon-to-be parents. I was most worried about what my child would be like as a teen because at that time I was teaching and knew the struggles teenagers faced daily. Eventually I learned not to focus on that, but rather to worry more about getting the boys safely to that point. A strange thing happened to me along the way. I stopped worrying about them becoming teenagers and adults because they taught me to live in the here and now.
My Guy and I worked hard to give them the right tools to deal with situations as their lives evolved. We nourished them and in return they nourished us.
I remember having a great need for my mother’s ongoing presence and love. I can only hope our boys will always have the same need for us. And that their lives will forever be colored by that love.
As it says in Robert Munsch’s Love You Forever, “I’ll love you forever. I’ll like you for always. As long as I’m living, My babies you’ll be.”
Happy Mother’s Day to all, even those who are not mother’s because I’m sure your acts have nourished others on more occasions than you realize.
2 thoughts on “Colored By A Mother’s Love”
Now, that’s indeed another valuable treasure you’ve shared with us! I, too, was a teacher, but after marriage decided not to have my own kids, which at times of course I do regret. Reading your words, describing so beautifully (what an honor to THEM!) their development up to this point is a treasured gift to us all. Thank you, thank you!
Sarah Cross Mills
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Oh Sarah. You touched many a life and so gave birth over and over again. Thank you sharing your thoughts.
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