Tag Archives: Mother

21: A Guest Post by my Mom

In honor of Mother’s Day, I am posting a poem written by my mother, for my twenty-first birthday.

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

Holding five pounds of a newborn miracle

who could barely drink 4 ounces of fluid at one time.

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

A one-year-old’s Easter birthday,

sitting on her new rocker (just like mommy’s)

and sliding off onto the floor,

because of a wet diaper!

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

A two-year-old, whose daddy just left

and who decided to forego her potty chair

and remain in the security of being a “baby”

just a little longer . . .

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

A jubilant three-year old emerging from her room

like a butterfly from a cocoon,

decked out in every color of clothing she had,

announcing “I’m a rainbow!”

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

A four-year-old who had to have explained to her

that Jim was mommy’s boyfriend, not hers.

Who also asked, when Jim ate his first meal with us,

“Are you going to marry my mommy?”

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

On her fifth birthday, on our way to Day Care

asking me, “Am I big now, Mommy?”

I responded, “Yes, I believe you are.”

Her acknowledgment that “I knew it, I felt big.”

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

My tiny, little, vulnerable six-year-old girl

traveling by plane, alone, to Connecticut

to visit her dad . . . and, me, pacing all day

until I heard that she arrived safely.

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

The trauma for a seven-year-old losing your first tooth,

but the joy of a visit from the “tooth-fairy.”

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

When she was eight, almost nine . . .

wondering why she couldn’t go along

on Jim and my honeymoon.

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

My nine-year-old becoming a “ballerina”

and trying to teach me a “grande plié” with

disastrous, yet hilarious, results!

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

My ten-year-old, who, on her birthday,

found our ten month old kitten, hit by a car

and dead on the roadside, while walking home from school.

We had a family funeral for Sydney before we had

her less-than-enthusiastic birthday party.

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

At eleven-years-old, your enthusiastic desire

to learn how to play a flute, and

practicing often, without any reminders~

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

Being twelve-years-old, in the sixth grade

and your teacher saying you were bored often

because you were so bright the other children

weren’t learning fast enough to keep up with you.

That same teacher held auctions several times each year

where you could bid on items with earned “money”

from good school work.

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

The challenges of having a teenager,

watching you adjusting to middle school,

your wanting to fit in and wear make-up

and doing some acting out to make a statement.

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

My fourteen-year-old, in your last year of ballet,

injuring your knee cap and having to wear a

full-leg cast to keep your leg immobile!

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

At fifteen-years-old, in the ninth grade,

being in the Marching Band at Parkrose High School,

playing the flute and the piccolo, at times.

That summer, you even taught yourself how to play my clarinet.

Music was so natural and absorbing to you.

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

You, at age sixteen and a sophomore,

surprising your parents by getting accepted into

the “Honors Program.”  Finally, classes that could

challenge your bright intellect!

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

Your being seventeen, a junior in high school,

having gone to Guatemala that past summer and

the impact of this trip on your life and on your

cultural awareness and the bonding with friends

and leaders in the Resurrection Youth Group.

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

The blessings and curses of your being a senior and working at McDonalds.

Good for developing a work ethic, bad for developing a smoking habit.

The pride of seeing you, with the Class of ’93, march across the stage

to receive your diploma . . . at my alma mater!  And . . your typical, yet refreshing,

individualism in ordering, for the ceremony,  the (men’s) green robe instead of

the traditional (women’s) white robe!

***************************************************

Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

Sending you off to your first year of college,

seeing your joy, enthusiasm and vision of the future

contrasted with my emptiness and my child-shaped hole

left in my heart.

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Twenty-one, yet I remember . . .

The difficult summer and sophomore year it must have been

for you to loose first your grandpa (7/4/94), and then

your grandma (3/6/95), two people who were very much a part

of your daily life as you were growing up.  Yet, I saw

your sense of family ties growing.  Through their deaths,

you gained a new understanding of how precious your family ties are.

***************************************************

Twenty-one, . . . I can’t believe it!

As you probably have figured out, twenty-one is a milestone

in some regards, but in other ways, it’s just another birthday as you

travel on your journey through life.  You don’t magically become

an adult, more responsible, more mature, richer, wiser . . .  

Life is a journey, sometimes growing step-by-step, sometimes by leaps and bounds.

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And, thankfully, Christel, we are all on the journey together, helping each other out, holding each other up!  Happy traveling, Happy birthday, Christel!

Love you with all my heart,

Mom

4/18/96

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