May 8, 2011

Dandelions and Jelly Kisses

On Mother's Day, I didn't wish for flowers. I didn't wish for candy, chocolate, or cake. I didn't wish for store-bought poems, or a dinner out with the other 13523413543 mothers who didn't have to cook tonight. I don't need any clothes, underwear, robes, or slippers.

What I got today was a hand-picked dandelion, a kiss from one face covered in dirt and jelly and another face moist with spit and/or snot, and an abstract crayon drawing that featured two smiley faces. And you know what? It was perfect.

There are days that I get frustrated because I cannot clean my kids fast enough before they fall down and eat a mouth full of grass all over again. And there are days I feel like if I hear "Show me this!" or "Look at that!" one more time I might lock myself in the bathroom until they reach puberty. And heaven help me - it's MAY! - enough with the Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer movie.

But in all of this I see something... I see innocence and curiosity. I see compassion, love, warmth, and understanding. I see creativity and expression. I see a passion for life that is so unique to toddlers. And it's when I recognize those things in my two beautiful children that I realize, hey!, this is what being a mother is all about.

Lainey and Owen, you are my stars and my moon. Thank you for bringing your spilled milk, wet kisses, jazz hands and high-pitched screeches into my life. The world, MY world, is a better place because of you two.

And to my own mother, who is my most loyal reader - and truly, one of my most loyal supporters all around: I work with you, day in and day out, and yet despite this I still look forward every day to coming in and sharing conversation with you. Sometimes it's about war, sometimes it's sharing a laugh at Lainey's latest quotation, sometimes it's commiserating over the gross overuse of the words "and" I know that you, just like every other mom on the planet, worry about things you did too much of or didn't do enough of when we were growing up. But neither of your kids are in jail, and we didn't grow up to be politicians, so you clearly did something right. You gave us love, support, and encouragement, tinfoil ornaments and camping adventures, and those things far outweigh the number of cans of Spagettios we have collectively consumed in our lifetimes. To paraphrase the great Mother Teresa - "We can do no great things, only small things with great love." Thank you for always showing us great love.

Happy Mother's Day to me, to my mother, and to every other woman out there whose life has been redefined by the little (sticky/poopy/giggly/furry/lively/slobbery) things only a mom can appreciate.


  1. I miss coming to work with my mom everyday. It's weird how you can see someone so much and never run out of things you want to tell them.


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