Dear Anna and Lauren,
I’m writing to you today for the same reason that I always blog about you or write to you. So that one day, when you’re grown, you’ll hopefully be interested in knowing how your Mom thought and felt about your childhood and raising you when you were wee. And you’ll be able to read all about it.
(Goodness knows I won’t remember all the little details.)
I want to give you a look into the inner ramblings of my mind. And it goes a little something like this:
I’m laying in bed.
I’m thinking instead of sleeping again. I'm thinking about how late it is. Thinking about you two.
I turn over and stare at a strong, quiet face - covered in stubble. It's a peaceful face. Sound asleep. It's one of your most favourite faces in the world.
I marvel at how the brain inside that head has the ability to be so carefree. I wonder if he ever lays awake thinking about every little thing that happened that day. Would sleep ever take a backseat to the worry that he didn't do good enough today?
I wonder if your little 4-year-old self will remember that I lost my cool and yelled at you this morning? Or will you remember the afternoon we played on your bed for over an hour - kissing and hugging, then laughing... hiding under the covers, giggling and rolling around.
Will you, my sweet little 2-year-old, have happy memories growing up in our house? Playing in the court outside, running and biking and picking up leaves and insects. Will you think I took enough pictures of you? Will you talk about our family vacations with fondness when you're grown?
What does it take to do it right? What do I need to do? What do I need to say?
Of course, I realize, for the most part I just need to be. Be present. Be here for you. Kiss your boo-boos. Hug you each morning. Tell you how happy I am to see you when you get home from school. Just be me.
Because "me" is someone who loves you intensely. Who can't quite remember being someone other than your Mom.
Someone who will always do things like smile and laugh with an incredible amount of pride at the sight of you jumping on the trampoline at gymnastics class. Or immediately start bawling when you give me your first Mother’s Day card made at daycare.
And as you get older, as we make different choices together - I'm learning. About you, and me, and the decisions I have to make as a parent.
And I’ve realized that there's no script to follow. I can't answer the question "what does it take to be a good Mom". There are no rules for everyone to obey.
But, I do know that it doesn't matter if we stay at home or go to work, have one child or have six, if they've got special needs or not, if we believe in attachment parenting or if we're laissez-faire. We all have the same worries. The same feelings. The same questions.
And we all love like we've never loved before.
Remember that, my girls. Remember that I love you. Remember that, Moms. Remember that you love like you've never loved before.
And for that reason, the kids are going to be alright.
Everything's going to be alright.
About the Author:
Heather Dixon is a copywriter at Mabel’s Labels, a smoothie aficionado, a runner, a wife and a Mom to two – soon to be three! – highly advanced little girls (according to her husband and her).