I want to say they come out of nowhere, but I would be lying. They are in fact, quite predictable. An event, a ceremony, or when for-whatever-reason my son or daughter is on a stage. Always at the least convenient time, and in the most public setting, I have what I call “mom moments.”
Perhaps you can identify?
When the tears threaten to come, I bite the inside of my cheeks really hard. For some reason the distraction keeps the drops at bay, allowing me to get through the occasion without showing the depth of my emotion. Not that there is anything wrong with emotional displays, other than their messing up my mascara or embarrassing those around me, including my child.
This month I am preparing myself for some really sore cheeks.
You see, in the next few weeks we have a college graduation, a high school graduation, and my only daughter/youngest child will be “moving on” from elementary to middle school. With five kids, I have been down these roads before, but it doesn’t make this time any easier (or drier).
Having developed, perfected really, an immediate response to those times when my eyes want to spill over with drops of glee, I hold back by biting down. Admittedly, some occasions are more challenging than others to get through.
The tears threatening to spill over the rims of my eyes are not from pride, even though I am truly excited for each child’s achievement and absolutely share their anticipation for the next step.
The tears are not because time itself appears to be passing more quickly every year (a frightening realization all by itself); cementing the idea there will be an eventual end to mom moments entirely.
No, the tears I try so hard to keep in check are the deep wellspring of my soul’s gratitude for having been given the gift to be their guide during this phase in their lives. The person chosen to listen, support, encourage, all the while holding her tongue and holding back her judgment, in the name of allowing each one to grow into who they are meant to be.
It’s the precipitating event or ceremony when it hits me, and I realize all of those moments that appear so insignificant (patience in the face of the book left behind AGAIN, finding the money we didn’t have for braces so he would have a smile he could really beam, getting up extra early to get him to the tournament on a Saturday morning, driving the endless miles to classes and practices because she loves the sport…), have brought us to this day of celebration.
Time passes so quickly, especially when we are in celebration mode, I want to remind you this month as you go about your graduations, Father’s Day traditions, and family weddings, to ease up on the details of the party plan and pause, take it all in, and to fully cherish those people and places that are dear to you.
So, in turn, they will learn to practice the same thing.
Kimberly Muench is a Flower Mound mother of five and author of “My Mothers Footprints: A story of Faith, Calm, Courage, Patience and Grace.” To see more of her work or to contact her, visit www.realifemom.com.