Friday, June 28, 2013

Last Day of JK: Onward and Upwards

The last day of your JK year dawned dreary, rainy and mild.  It's hard to believe it was 8.5 months ago we all walked you (as your father semi-embarassingly videotaped the entire trip) to your first day of school all dapper and four in your navy uniform.

Today it would be just you, me and our umbrellas on our last stroll towards your last day in Junior Kindergarten.

Of-course you needed to have my black umbrella and therefore I was stuck with your dinky yet very cool Batman one.  But us Mom's...we're used to that kind of thing.

Besides a little rain never hurt anyone.

"Why are we walking today?  It's raining.  It's because we're not sugar?"

I laughed.  Ah the way the past relives itself.  I hear my Mother's words leave my lips all too often these days...

"Yep.  We're not made of sugar so we won't melt right?"

I wondered, as we left the house, as I have been wondering everyday since you began school, if you would reach for my hand once again.

And you do.

It's a gesture that is unconscious, habitual perhaps.

My heart swells and sighs and I smile in relief, in pride, in utter love that yesterday was thankfully not the last day that your soft five year old hand tucked into my 35 year old loving, Mother-strong one.

My hope is that today won't be the last either.

As we say our good-bye's at the door of the school you hug my waist and grant me a smooch in front of your peers.

This very well could be the last time that happens but I continue to hold out hope that it won't be.

I repeat the words I've said to you 5 days out of the week for over 8 months, "Have fun.  I'll see you in a couple hours.  I love you!"  Your response is usually the same which is not much more than a nod as you turn and walk through the gates or the door with rarely a glance back.  

Your year in JK taught me a lot about you which seems contrary to the fact that you were away from me for 2.5 hours each day.  Not a significant amount of time but longer than what we're used to.

I've always thought, as parents always do, that my kid (you) is full of awesome, darn smart and then some but it turns out you're also a very great little student.  A hard worker, bright, tenacious, kind, mature, competitive, social though a bit shy and an all around good kid.  And that's all I want for you kiddo.  To me the highest paid compliment is for someone to say I raised good kids.  For the word 'good' does not get enough credit.  Good, in this instance, is all things wonderful wrapped up into a simple word.  And that is you my son.

I hope I continue to do right by you.

These are all amazing qualities that will serve you well, into your future.

Keep up the good work my love.  I'm proud of you.  Always.

So very, very proud.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Outwitted by my 5 year old

Exasperation at my 5 year old's bedtime stall tactics and the heat of the day that pervaded the house had gotten to me.

"There is no way you're still hungry..." I began the enormous list of the various foods he had just finished in the past 2 hours.

"Buddy, come on." But I'm sooo hungry.

"Please stoooop."  I'm sooooo hungry!

"It's bedtime.  Enough.  You're not hungry you just don't want to go to bed."  But I'm sooooo huuuungry.

"Lay.down. NOW.  There is no eating."  More groaning due to apparent dying of hunger.

"Why are you making my life so difficult right now?"  I just need a banana!

We had no bananas.  

Numerous parental phrases in a tone I wished I could reverse every time the words came out of my mouth.

Minutes that seemed like an hour went by as I struggled with both boys during bed time hour.  The guilt mounted as I tried not to think about the way I was talking to my five year old son.

He finally laid still beside me.  As I tickled the soft inside of his arm that lay across my stomach, love and guilt and exhaustion ran through my heart, body and mind.  But mostly it was love.  Love always trumps the rest.

"I love you bugs."

"I love you too....
                           ----what does 'I love you' mean?"

"What do you think it means?"

"I don't know."

"Is love a good feeling or a bad feeling?"


"Of-course.  I love you is one of the best things you can say to someone.  It means you would do anything for them."

......"like get some fruit for you when you're hungry?...."

I laughed.  And laughed.

And laughed until I was hit with a startled terrifying realization that my 5 year old child just outwitted me.

That quite possibly his question - a good one but one which he clearly already knew the answer to - duh - was a calculated tactic to guilt me into feeding him once again.

I'm in trouble you guys.

Big. BIG trouble.

Monday, June 10, 2013

He Loves Me So Well

Somewhere in the midst of a thousand and two days in a relationship the frenetic skipping of your heart slows down to a steady reliable beat.  And if you're lucky and smart enough to realize what an authentic and true relationship entails, instead of turning away from the steady ba-bump, ba-bump you lean in and embrace it, succumb towards the real and eventually promise each other forever.

Romance becomes not a whirlwind any longer.  Flowers eventually perish, their withered endings turning back into the soil and changing into something perhaps less delicate but more finite from within other organisms will root themselves, blooming again.

Romance and the ways to show love will move beyond gifts, beyond rhapsodic declarations and roaring emotions, morphing into subtle loving nuances within the everyday.

The trick to the success of knowing when and what you have is good is in the realization of all these small sometimes unrecognizable moments that are strung together with a sinewy texture and sepia tones.

You can find them in morning when you wake up to a hot cup of coffee on your bedside table or when you're laying in bed with the children between you and he reaches for your hand after brushing back the damp after bath hair from their heads.  It's in the moments when you finally put them to bed and curl up together watching your favourite show and you promise each other to always lay just this way ... even when your 94.  It's in the way he touches the small of your back as you walk in front of him or in making their favourite meal just because.  It's in the way he looks at you when you watch your children play together as if to say, "we make awesome how did we get so lucky?" It's there in his lips that linger a second longer before you lay your heads back down wearily for the night.  It's in him knowing exactly what is going to come out of your mouth before it leaves your lips.  It's in the way he can bring you up from a hard day simply with his embrace.  It's in the way you've promise to always be a team and to show your children what a good, healthy marriage looks like.  It's in the wine soaked nights laying side by side on your back deck in the midnight hour after friends stumble away leaving you listening to your wedding song.

It's in all of that and so much more.

And if you're really, really lucky, it's in the surprise weekend away that he planned for your 7 year wedding anniversary.

But within all of that, the layers of 13 years that brought job changes, moving cities, travels, illness, injuries, family deaths, marriage and children...the most sacred thing to do for the most important person in your life is to love them well.

So thank you, John, for loving me so well.

Happy Anniversary love.

How did we get so lucky? 

June 10, 2006

....and 7 years later.  

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Saturday Morning

I heard the quick muted patter of little feet on carpet come closer until he stood in the doorway of the master bedroom, Sleepy Sheepy clutched to his chest.  I laid the book I had been reading on my nightstand as he made his way to my side of the bed.

"Hiii honey love!"

I lifted him up noting how heavy he's getting.  My baby boy must be close to 40 pounds now.  I kissed his cheeks as he snuggled into me.  Rare were these easy, lazy kind of mornings any more.

"Did you have a good sleep?"


His head remained on my shoulder for a moment more then he sat up.

"Sleepy Sheepy likes his back tickled."  He laid his favourite stuffed animal between us to demonstrate.  "Up at the top."

"Oh yeah...just like you do."

"And Bunny likes his back scratched.  But not hard.  Just..."  he continued to tickle Sleepy Sheepy's back and my heart felt like it couldn't take anymore of the cuteness when he mentioned his other favourite stuffed animal.  He searched for the right word to use as to how Bunny liked his back scratched and found it,  "just easy."

He scrambled down the other side of the bed, Daddy's side, announcing he "gotta go pee."  But before he made his way into the door behind him he said, "Mummy, look how big I am!"  I could see his entire 3.5 year old perfect face over top our very high king bed and recalled not so long ago when he used to struggle to climb up onto our bed.

This was a new sentence that he repeated many times throughout the day as he reached to the lowest branch of a tree, or stood close to me or stretched his arms as high as they could go onto the kitchen counter to reach a cookie. My answer was always the same too.

"Oh my goodness!  You are getting so big!"

And he was getting so big, this baby boy of mine.  So quickly.

Too quickly.

He returned and climbed easily back onto the bed beside me for another quick cuddle before the usual request, "Mummy, I want Cheerios."

I threw the covers back and sat up.

He climbed onto my back and down we descended piggy-back style to start our Saturday morning.