she was also just a girl

When you're a kid, you don't realize your mom is also a woman.  
She is really, actually, in her heart, just a girl. 
Just a girl raising her babies.  
Just a girl with worries, fears and a heavy heart for the load she's carrying.

This week I have found myself thinking a lot about my mom.  

Last Sunday I found a lump on cheek near my jawbone.  Naturally, I completely freaked out.  Then I called my mom. She assured me it was likely a swollen lymph node, and nothing to worry about.  (I went to the clinic today, and she was right.)  

But she also told me that my freak out was normal.  She said she was never so scared to be sick as she was when she had small children in the house. 

Sure, I have life insurance, but no one, no one, can take my place. No one loves those boys like I do. No one sings to them, teases them, hugs them like I do.  No one is as invested in their future as I am.

I think back to my childhood memories, and find myself exiting my personal memory and trying to experience them through my mom's eyes.  That time I cracked my head open with my dad, and he left her a bloody dress with a note that said, "At the hospital".  That time I sat, in my Garfield panties, on the hibachi, still hot from cooking Oscar Meyer's.  Now that I'm a mom, with all the same worries, fears and heavy heart, I feel how she must have felt.

I imagine the sleepless nights, the anxiety, the tears shed over the four of us.

I have felt lately that I worry too much. That I control too much.  That I obsess over every tiny detail, and in the end, it's not really up to me.  But then, after mulling those thoughts over the last few days, I have decided  I am doing what I know is right for my children.  To worry, control and pay attention to every detail is the way I pour my love into them.  

This job I'm doing here, raising these boys into men, is meant to be all consuming. What on the planet could be more important?  It's not easy.  Doing Day Two of "No Screens" wasn't easy.  Getting chores done while contemplating the lump on my face and its inherent danger wasn't easy.  Enforcing rules, manners, and listening all.day.long without Josh wasn't easy.  But I didn't sign up for easy.

I am so thankful that I have my mom to turn to for moments of clarity like we had on Sunday.  I am thankful she said to me, "Yes. It's scary. You are needed.  You are vital, and that fear? That's real."  It allowed me to take a breath and feel that I wasn't losing my mind.

This job really is all that matters.
This job is what I live for.
These boys are what I live for.

And as I'm living that truth, I feel like I am coming to understand my own mother better.


Tiffanie King said...

Saw your mom this weekend. She is sure so sweet! :)

Rox said...

What a great post, I've definitely found new understanding and respect for our mom after becoming a mom.