Stacey Loscalzo

Dec 09

Thank You Erma Bombeck

by Stacey

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I’m not quite sure how it is that I have never read this piece by Erma Bombeck but I haven’t. Fortunately, I was introduced to it today and I plan on printing it out and putting it on my bulletin board immediately.

Lately, I have been saying that ten is the new thirteen. It seems that I must say no more than yes. I must leave unanswered as many questions as I answer. I must give enough space while remaining close. I have been traveling this terrain for a bit now. I hope these words will serve as reminder to me as I continue down this confusing path.

“Someday, when my children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates a mother, I’ll tell them…

I loved you enough to bug you about where you were going, with whom and what time you would get home.

I loved you enough to insist you buy a bike with your own money, which we could afford, and you couldn’t.

I loved you enough to be silent and let you discover your hand picked friend was a creep.

I loved you enough to stand over you for two hours while you cleaned your bedroom, a job that would have taken me 15 minutes.

I loved you enough to say, “Yes, you can go to Disney World on Mother’s Day.”

I loved you enough to let you see anger, disappointment, disgust, and tears in my eyes.

I loved you enough not to make excuses for your lack of respect or your bad manners.

I loved you enough to admit that I was wrong and ask for your forgiveness.

I loved you enough to ignore “what every other mother” did or said.

I loved you enough to let you stumble, fall, hurt, and fail.

I loved you enough to let you assume the responsibility for your own actions, at 6, 10, or 16.

I loved you enough to figure you would lie about the party being chaperoned, but forgave you for it…after discovering I was right.

I loved you enough to shove you off my lap, let go of your hand, be mute to your pleas and insensitive to your demands…so that you had to stand alone.

I loved you enough to accept you for what you are, and not what I wanted you to be.

But most of all, I loved you enough to say no when you hated me for it. That was the hardest part of all.”

-Erma Bombeck

11 Comments

  1. Tamara says:

    I love this, and I think you already know I needed it because you read my post this morning and you know I’ve been struggling with the parent/child bonds. And mine are so young. I know there is so much to learn and love.

  2. Jen Robinson says:

    I don’t think I’ve seen this one before either. Thanks for sharing. I needed this today. 

  3. Kim says:

    Powerful piece, thanks for sharing 🙂

  4. Shana Norris says:

    Thanks SO much for sharing this, Stacey.  Such wise words.  And – in many cases – so hard to do.  I’m printing this one out too.

  5. Caroline says:

    I’m so glad you found this. I, too, have printed it and will aspire to live my way into Bombeck’s wise words.

  6. I love Erma Bommbeck!  I remember reading a book of hers at my grandma’s house when I was a teenager.  Even then I thought she was really funny, and I couldn’t even begin to appreciate her wisdom!  From what I’ve seen, the “teenage attitude” does seem to come sooner these days, but by the time the kids are actual teenagers, they seem to be pretty pleasant human beings!  Good luck surviving til then! 

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