Monday, June 07, 2010


The routine is stepping down a notch today and there is change in the air. Big change. The more I sit and write and edit and think, the more tender I'm feeling on this most ordinary of Monday mornings. Such is the meaning of the mundane in the life of a mother.

It's a beautiful morning-cool and crystalline. The temps are low and there is a breeze right now a little after 7 am so it feels delicious outside. My late spring flowers are starting to peak. The hydrangeas are a riot of blue-morphing-into-pink and the tiger lilies are just starting out their month-long parade of orange. The hard winter agrees with the garden-everything is strong and healthy after a good dose of cold forced them to really sleep and rest.
Seminary is over and Sam has a job. So, instead of Sam and Sara leaving together at 5:50 am, now they go their separate ways at 6:55 or so-Sara to the bus with her purse and her books on her arm and Sam to work in the summer job world of Pest Control, dressed like a real man in thrift-store Carhartt work pants and boots and carrying a lunch cooler. They left in the full light of a risen sun instead of the pale, ending darkness, so everything just feels different.

It gave me a strange pang to see Sara walk down the street alone with the morning light making a halo of her thick, honey-colored hair. She looked suddenly so very grown-up, so lovely and graceful. I've been hanging onto her very hard, not wanting to let her get big, I think hoping for more second chances to have a better relationship with her, wishing I could go back and tuck her little-girl self into my lap and tell her again that I love her so much. But today she stepped out alone. Maybe our brightest days will be in our second life as mother and daughter-when we're both grown-ups and she realizes that even my clumsiest attempts at mothering her were borne of love. I have glimpses of that, even now.

Today also means that the years of Evan and I having our hour together in the mornings are over. We'd read together or just joke around or even watch a little tv. Now his leaving comes fast on the heels of the other two, so today we had just enough time for a goodbye. In the fall, he's off to high school and my house will be empty before 6 am every day.

This one day really does mark another leap for our family, so I'm going to go ahead and let the tenderness come. I think I need it. I'm feeling more real, more myself than I have in weeks.


  1. Yup, you got me crying. And then Red walked in and asked, "Why are you like that?" and I grabbed her and kissed her, which just confused her even more.

    You are such an amazingly loving mother- truly a role model for me. And I'm not just saying that to be cheesy!!

  2. Sweet,dear friend, you know I feel it, too. It is a blessing to yourself and to her that you recognize that all you have done is love her. Several of your statements give me comfort, as usual. I hope you are finding the same.

  3. Changes . . . like them I do not, sometimes. Just think of all the amazing times you don't even know you're going to have yet with your adult children. I always say about my little ones, "they are just going to grow up and hate me." and then my mom says, "and then they'll grow up more and like you again." So you see, there are cycles. If only we could talk about them as poetically as you.


Thank you for sharing your insights!