Down the Target aisles we went, getting last minute Christmas gifts. We push our way around shoppers stopping to grab a few things. Rory talks and points to the lady passing by. She stops and smiles at him, remarking on how cute he is; Rory points to the fire truck on his shirt to show her, she patiently lets him grunt and we start talking. We talk about when toddlers start talking and words become sentences. Then she says: “Cherish it, because sometimes they die at nineteen” I look at her, unsure what to say. I tell her how sorry I am, she goes on to tell me about her son’s colon cancer “it’s ok, it has been nineteen years, I can talk about it and not cry.” I look at her, amazed.
To the seasoned mothers: Talk to us; we are young moms in the trenches of babies and toddler-hood. Remind us to cherish it. We need the reminder. We need to remember and know. We live in the day-in-age that we are reminded to make sure we have it all: a job, the kids, self-care, home-cooked meals, but we can’t be too attached to our children, we are reminded of the wrong things. Instead, we need to be reminded to cherish it, to remember them. I struggle with this as a mom. I struggle through the toddler hood; not because I don’t love my son, I just am not that great with young kids. It is the honest-to-goodness truth. I feel awkward and overwhelmed most days, I want to cherish these moments and not be so stressed out about the little things that seem so big.
Remember us: instead of looking at us in disgust in the grocery aisle when our kids are crying, remind us that we are doing a good job, because I can tell you most of the time I feel like a complete failure. Remember most of us are trying to do our best and if we have our kid on a leash walking around, there is probably a good reason for it.
We as young mothers need the seasoned ones to remind us of all the things that we keep forgetting. Because I can honestly say I don’t mean to forget, but reminders are always a welcomed help. We don’t need to be reminded out of judgement or pity or a scolding to hold on to the days, but a gentle nudge that we may be doing ok, that this job is the most important thing we will ever do and the hardest!
We need you seasoned mothers; we need you to help us as young mothers navigate through the trenches. I am grateful to those who see that; those who see us. I hope one day to be that seasoned mom, cheering on the younger generation. Even in all my failures, the places that need help, I hope to remember to cherish it.
Thank you seasoned mom for stopping, you gave me a gift in the middle of a candy aisle. I hope I remember, even though I know some days I won’t. These days won’t last forever, and I am going to miss them when they are gone. I want to remember, and I hate that I forget, but I will keep trying and do it all over again, so one day I can look back and wish for these days again, in the meantime I am going to try to look for the little moments, that will end up being the big moments and cherish them.