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.”