I couldn’t begin to count the number of times I’ve heard, “Mom, there’s just one more thing I need….”, and the list goes on and on and on. But, the odd thing is that I’ve never grown tired of hearing that. Instead, those words make me feel good, and happy, and useful, and needed. It’s when I don’t hear those words that I feel lost and lonely and a bit forgotten. Crazy, isn’t it?
This morning was a regular type of morning….except that I was missing the kids. So many of them live far away, and our visits are limited to once a year. Most days I’m okay with that, but not today. It was just one of those “I’m missing my kids” kind of days. Maybe it’s the changing of the season. Maybe it’s just that kids are returning back to school, and that gives me reminders that I don’t have any little ones home any more. Or, maybe I’m just more aware of the minutes ticking by more quickly as I grow older.
I was checking my emails and wishing that the phone would ring with a call from one of the kids when there — I spotted it! “Mom, I hate to ask you, but…….there’s just one more thing that I need!” You have no idea how much that lifted my spirts! I read the email request and thought to myself……I’m needed. I’m being call on as “mom”. I’m not forgotten. I still serve a purpose.
Honestly, I think most of us as parents go through phases like this, but we feel a bit weird to express it. When our children are young, they depend on us for everything from their daily food, shelter, and clothing to their rides to and from school, the doctor, piano lessons, and soccer games.
Then, in the blink of an eye they’re driving their own cars, and suddenly they become independent…..(except when they need cash to fill up the gas tank)! And, we parents have a tough time discovering the new role we now play in the lives of our children. They no longer need us as they did when they needed us to tie their shoes, wipe their noses, and pack their lunches. In fact, in this day of technology and instant everything, our kids rarely really need us for anything. Help is available at the click of a mouse on the computer, iPhone, or GPS!
I don’t know that I’ll ever outgrow the desire to be needed in the lives of my children. I want them to be grown up and independent, yet I still value my place in their hearts as “mom.” I still like it when they call to ask my opinion. I cherish those times when I hear, “I don’t know how you did it! Help me get through this!” I love knowing that even though we are all taking on new roles in life, I can still fill the slot as “mom.” And, yes, I really do love it when I occasionally get the email or call that says, “Mom, there’s just one more thing I need.” To me, those words are translated into “Mom, I still need you!”
I love you, Steph!