I offer this blog posting to the moms and dads out there who are running to prepare for another school year. My son is way past the age of worrying about going back to school. But I still remember the days when I felt overwhelmed by all that moms and dads do to care for their offspring. I wanted to encourage you to take time for yourselves and keep your wonderful senses of humor. Here is my offering in honor of you beautiful gals and guys.
My only child saw his 29th birthday a few years ago. We had a lovely celebration which included a trip to Downtown Denver, an exceptionally delicious dinner and then a live production of the Nutcracker. That evening, after the festivities, I thought about those 29 years and remembered many wonderful times, especially when he was just a little tyke.
Like all mothers, I have gone through the period of time with my son, when he was little, where I heard, “Mom, mom,” nonstop throughout the day. Sometimes it seemed like the demands were so many, I was unable to keep from getting dizzy while spinning from one thing to the next. His calls for “Mom,” for the most part, were not accompanied by urgency. Still paying attention to his needs was, of course, my first priority.
One particular day, however, Gabe was following me around with continuous chatter and requests. This is the way with little ones, and I really didn’t mind. But at the end of that day, say about 4:00 in the afternoon, I began to get weary. My son’s grandmother was there and she said, “Laura, why don’t you go and take a hot bath, have some wine and read a book? I will take care of Gabe for a little while.”
I gratefully agreed. While sweeping Gabe onto my lap, I explained, “Gabriel, mom is going to take a long bath. When I get out of the tub, we will help Grammy make dinner. Then we will all play later tonight, okay? I am going into the bath now. I just need to rest for a while. So for the time I am in there I don’t want to hear the word mom. It will be just a little while and no hollering for mom okay?”
He smiled, kissed my cheek, wiggled down from my lap and went happily on his little way with his favorite action figure. I felt pleased that it appeared he took the instructions quite well.
I ran the bath, filled the tub with fragrant bubbles, poured a glass of white wine and settled into a luscious half hour to read and relax without the little voice calling for mom. About 10 minutes into my bliss I remember thinking that my son was being very good to not come calling for mom. Then a knock came at the bathroom door accompanied by Gabe’s little voice on the other side.
“Laura, Laura.” How could I be annoyed or angry? He had obeyed me to the letter.
You know, in those days, I treasured the few small patches of alone time when I could find them. But today, when I have more solitude than I have ever had, I rejoice when I answer a ringing telephone and hear, “Mom?”
Copyright January 2013
Lakewood, CO 80401
Follow me on Twitter @lauraleepadgett
Check out my book: “Dolores, Like the River” http://bookstore.westbowpress.com/Products/SKU-000662647/Dolores-Like-the-River.aspx