No one else sees them like their father and I see them. No one else smiles at their successes like we do. Because no one else has been there for the tears, their fears, their tantrums, their diaper blow-outs like we have. No one else has loved them so closely through thick and thin. 10 hour layovers. Longs nights with high fevers. Grumpy days and weeks while they have each worked through the process (and still do) of learning to use their words to express their emotions. We are their biggest fans.
The early years were different. Sheer mental exhaustion and illness almost took me from them forever. This Mother's Day I reflected on how lucky I am to be here with them. To see them through those harder years and to enjoy a little landing pad we call space and time: the now. It, too, will change quickly and new challenges will be folded in along with new joys.
How great it is to be with them in present tense with all of our collective rights and wrongs and jokes and farts. Every bit of laughter leaks out a little louder and every hug I hold a little longer.
One will finally admit when an assignment is overwhelming. And I get to guide and lead, then step away and watch it through completion.
Another will push and pull the Mommy role in public with a brief head on my shoulder or a holding of my hand while I stand near, patient and ready for the independence or comfort needed on that one's own timetable.
And one will clutch tightly, letting go with wobbly social skills and a scowl at my correcting. Only to watch from a distance my effort taking shape and the training wheels of motherhood slowly falling off as they each learn and grow near me.
They are each showing me who they are and I am slowing down and listening a little better with each passing year. I'm so glad to be here for it all. Appreciating the right here, the right now.