When I was a little girl all my worries were based on little things, if I’d catch that firefly, surf that wave, if I could hold the kitten, pick the puppy from the litter, climb the tree, run faster, if I’d remember my bible verses for Sunday morning and if I was good enough for Santa to bring me presents this year. When I look back I often think, it was a fairy tale, but it wasn’t. It was just living simple. I didn’t need big things to make me happy. I needed the safety and guidance of my parents with enough space to grow and explore. I needed boredom so my mind could open to creative ideas and something to write them down in. I needed encouragement and love. I needed a foundation of trust. A strong and stable foundation. I had that and I pull from that every single day of my adult life. Without it I’d be nothing but gray, rusted, disgaurded rubble, waiting to be taken to the landfill. Forgotten. Crushed. Twisted bits of me.
Being a mother isn’t just a name I got for having a baby. It’s a duty, a responsibility, a gift and I take it very seriously. I’m the foundation of trust that my children will build on. I’m the strength, the guiding light, the soft place that they can fall. I am the smiling face that greets them, I am the voice they hear on the sidelines cheering them on. I am the one that helps them find their way, ready to catch them if they fall or kiss their boo boos if they were brave enough to do it by myself and it didn’t work out. I’m also the one to encourage them to try again, and again, and again because the things we fight the hardest for are the ones we feel the proudest of. Failing doesn’t mean it’s over, it means the next time we try harder and one day we will get it right. I’ll teach them sometimes we need to take chances to find what we’re looking for but it’s always good to think things through, before you jump. I’ll show them everyday, to me, they always come first. Nothing and no one ranks higher. Do I want them to feel entitled, absolutely not. I need them to feel special to me because the world isn’t going to make them feel that way. It will knock them down a lot on their journey. They will understand that working hard is what they need to do to get the job they want, to get paid more, to rise up the ladder and be able to reach their dreams. That not many things are handed to you and if they are, you don’t value them like you value what you worked for. I will teach them that they need to be a friend to have a friend. I will lead by example and I will love them with everything I have for the rest of my life and even after, I’m sure.
I write a lot about the destruction of my marriage. I write a lot about my pain, sadness, and loneliness. I write about it so I’m present for them here. I don’t live it out loud. Sure they’ve seen me cry, they’ve seen me angry, they’ve witnessed bad days where I wasn’t 100%. Most days I’m happy if I’m only reaching 75%…no one is perfect. I think it’s important that they see me upset because they also see what happens afterwards, when I’m ok again. If I’m ok so are they.
This life is the only one I get and this life is beautiful. It hasn’t been perfect but it’s been damn good and I know it will continue to be, even with some of the puzzle pieces missing. I can still see the image when they’re not all there. It still matters, they matter, and so do I. A wonderful life, filled with love. That’s all it has to be. Love. Simple.