Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Mother's Day and (What else?) Running

With Mother's Day approaching on Sunday, I decided to share with you my most favorite children's book of all time--Someday by Alison McGhee.  The words, the pictures---I seriously cannot get through this book without crying.  It is pretty funny to me to hear myself reading it aloud to my children.  My voice gets all quivery and a huge lump forms in my throat, and they are both like, "What? What's the matter, Momma?"  You see, they just don't get my perspective at all. 

This book begins when the child is a baby.  The mom is just enjoying her little baby girl so much.  But the mom says, "Then you were my baby.  Now you are my child."  She goes on to reveal some of her dreams that she has for her little girl once she is grown up.  This is the part that gets me every single time.  She wants her child to fully experience life--including the hurts.  That is my wish for my children too.  Oh, and there's a part about running!  She writes, "Someday you will run so fast and so far your heart will feel like fire."  The children never understand this part, but I bet you will, dear reader and running friend.  I wish this so much for my children, that they will experience running as I have.  As you also know, it is a most wonderful feeling.  

McGhee goes on to write about how this child will grow up to one day feel the weight of her own child on her back, how she will brush her daughter's hair, and how one day she (her baby!!) will have silver hair.  I can't imagine this---my little ones being old one day, being parents themselves, and me being only a memory to them.  I love how this book doesn't express the mother's huge and lofty aspirations for her child.  She doesn't want her to achieve fame and glory.  She wants her to experience life fully---to know the joy she has felt through something as simple as motherhood. 

So today, I embrace my role as the mother to my two wonderful children--my gifts, my joys.  Today I dream of the full lives they will lead.  And today I hope--however selfish it may seem--that they will carry a piece of me wherever they may go.  They mean the world to me. 

I will leave you with a favorite quote from Maureen Hawkins about the honor and awe that is motherhood.  

Before you were conceived
I wanted you
Before you were born
I loved you
Before you were here an hour
I would give my life for you
This is the miracle of life.

~ Maureen Hawkins

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