Friday, March 22, 2013

Apple. Tree.

I'm writing this post for my sisters, Melissa and Andrea to let you both know some wonderful news! I finally have an answer to a question that I've hounded Mom with over the years.  I've heard you ask it too and thought it worth sharing my moment of clarity given that we are all moms now.  Remember when we'd flip through those mega-thick photo albums of our youth, hoping to catch a glimpse of our adorableness in a snapshot, but instead pitying the mismatched, gawky group of four, nary a head of brushed hair among them?  "Moo-om, how could you let us leave the house wearing that???", I've asked over the years, never receiving a satisfactory response.  I should have known that given the accusation in my voice, this would eventually catch up to me.

And it did catch up to me.  At exactly 7:45 this morning when the babysitter text messaged me asking if I would be going to the Easter program at preschool to watch my children sing today. Today!? I stared angrily at the phone, willing the message to disappear.  I checked the calendar before I texted her back my correction, that the Easter program was in fact, next week.  But, the calendar corrected me and my texted reply was a dejected, "Wouldn't miss it!".   I just couldn't bring myself to confess my oversight after just two weeks ago getting the date mixed up for Pajama day, which was scheduled for the next week.  Whatever.  Everyday should be pajama day in my opinion.  And for the most part, my children share my opinion on these matters.

What followed was a frenzied rush of phone calls and text messages and rescheduling of my day's appointments.  Then, a chaotic flurry of getting the children dressed for the second time in one morning. As I ran up the stairs to help E pick out an Easter-y dress,  I called over my shoulder to A, "Could you pick out a nice outfit for your Easter program today?"  Several minutes later, as I settled E in my lap to pull together a french braid, a proud looking little boy waltzed down the stairs in his very un-Eastery outfit.   Oh my.  A delicate barter ensued.  My gentle suggestion to change out of high-watered cargo pants was taken, but when I added a collared shirt to my request, it was met with howls, and I immediately lost my chance at working any hair gel into his mop.  I played my brush your teeth card in exchange for Fine, you can wear your sneakers instead of dress shoes.

And while before I had children, I'd vowed that they would always look presentable for family photos, I was surprised to find that I didn't sweat the costume all that much because as it turns out,

Nobody rocks a Big Lebowski sweater, Spider-Man gloves, and hat hair like this guy....


And also because I had to rush out of the preschool after their last song to an appointment. I'd squeezed it into the hour I had before returning to pick up the kids from preschool.  I was excited to see the little boy, who's been talking more and more over the past few months.  His mom immediately shared with me the great news that the results from his lumbar puncture last week showed no increase in abnormal blood cells for the first time ever.  Ever!  I shared her joy as we worked together, and he had a great session.  As we wrapped up therapy, I mentioned the unexpected Easter program that presented on my schedule this morning as I thanked her for rescheduling their therapy time.  

"Well, you went, didn't you?" she cut me off before I went too far into my story.  Her normally soft and calm voice was a little sharp, the voice of a Mom whose son was just cleared to leave his home and be around other children in a group for the first time because until now the risk of infection was too great.  I nodded, our eyes sharing her unspoken reminder that life is so fragile and each moment is a memory not to be missed. 

My dear sisters, I'm not sure if any of this was in Mom's reasoning when she let me wear an off-the-shoulder Rainbow-Brite pajama top with too large boy's corduroy pants on the first day of school.  Maybe she just wanted to let us express our creativity through our clothes. Maybe everything else was in the laundry.  Maybe she saw me as I saw A today, the most handsome boy in his class no matter what he's wearing (that would make sense given my pixie haircut and boy's pants, I suppose).   Just wanted to share my moment of enlightenment this morning to the two who would know.