Saturday, November 7, 2009


The kids are grown, and not so much in the area any more. I miss them. Yesterday, Bill had a post on his blog that brought tears to my eyes. I think that kids in little footed sleepers are just about the cutest thing on the face of the earth, even cuter than puppies and kittens.

My children have long outgrown the footed sleepers, and sometimes I get misty eyed remembering little voices, and the sweetness of children, the little voices, little scraps of songs, and conversations. Dylan had 'dandelion hair' that would poof up. Brianna had a tendency to make her own words. 'Forleft' was one of them. 'Forleft' was a marriage of words, used for the times when she forgot something and left it at home. It was forleft. I remember what a placid baby Cara was, and how I'd slice up peaches for her, and set them on the tray of her high chair while I cooked supper, and she'd happily sit there eating and smiling. These memories make me smile.

I think it is interesting that these are the sort of memories that spring forth when I start reminscing. I don't remember things like the time that Cara began to chant 'dog poop' in the middle of a sermon at church, or the fact that Dylan screamed from six weeks to six months, and no one could figure out why. I don't remember the time that Brianna learned a new word. Boogersnatcher. And she was so pleased with that word that she called every one boogersnatcher everywhere we went. Temper tantrums in public places. I don't remember the fighting over toys.

Edit after morning shower: Now that I'm thinking of it, allow me to add to my little list of things that don't come to memory right away ~ like the time a child forgot a toy for show and tell and improvised. The 'tell' was about her mother having her tubes tied. And there was the boy who, as soon as he turned 18 simply walked into the office at school, changed his home address to a PO box, thereby eliminating the fuss his mom put up everytime that she got a letter from the school. Those letters went to his mail box and he was thus assured that his mother never heard a discouraging word. And then there is the time... well... never mind. (*deep cleansing breath*) You know what? It's better that I remember the sweet little memories of them in their footed PJs.

Yep. Being a parent is not easy.

You know, I saw something that made me cheer. I was in the store and I heard a little kid screaming like there was no tomorrow. His mother told him that he didn't need whatever it was that he was after. He was hopping mad. "I want it! I want it!" He screamed long and loud, jumping up and down like a little Rumpelstiltskin. His mother placidly said, "You got a toy yesterday. You don't get a new toy every day." He said, "I don't like the toy I got yesterday." His mother said, "You played with it all day long." And she headed for the checkout line as he trailed behind her, screaming his head off in frustration. She quickly paid for her purchases and headed for the door, telling her angry boy, "Come on, we're leaving now," as he shrieked, "I'm not going until I get a toy." Without ever raising her voice, without showing any sign of anger, she simply said, "Well, I'm leaving now. Goodbye." And out the door she went. One wide eyed boy stood there, shocked silent for the moment. He then wailed "Waaaaaaaait!" and went out the automatic doors. His mother was there, and they had another bit of a squabble until he finally agreed to give her his hand as they went across the parking lot.

Everyone in that store watched this little drama unfold with some amount of amusement. Every single one of us had probably 'been there, done that', as the saying goes. I said, "You know, I have to say it did my heart good to see that. Usually, you see parents getting rattled and upset at the child, or worse yet, simply giving in and giving the child what he wants to shush him." And the crowded checkout line rumbled in agreement.

And suddenly, each of us wanted to rush after that mother to tell her 'Good job!'

I hope she reads blogs.


PaintedPromise said...

ha! that reminds me of the story Randy tells of his young son... in a store, pitching a fit, Randy just walked away (of course keeping an eye on the kid from where he couldn't see!) when the kid realized no one was watching his little tantrum, and dad had in fact LEFT HIM, he just stopped, and went not-quite-frantically looking for dad... never threw another fit in a store neihter!

Bush Babe said...

No, but that woman is me. Just in a different place. My kids are pretty good now, but I still have the "BUT I NEED IT" cry... and it is so much easier to say no and put up with some minor public humiliation, that know you will face that same dilemma every SINGLE time you go shopping otherwise.

Thanks Deb. We need all the encouragement we can get...

Bill of Wasilla said...

How come I'm smiling so big, right now?

Because I just read your post and watched the little video, that's why.

Bob said...

Oh Debby this had me feeling so many things. and I needed this today.
Younger son plays on the high school football team. He know he is of modest talent but his heart is as big as all outdoors and he gives more than 100 percent.
Last night we were WAY ahead and he just knew he would get to go in on the Offensive Line but the coach put in a guy from the class beneath him. He came home and I just held him while he cried and wished with everything in me that I could fix it for him. My well meaning wife kept trying to say things that would make him feel better and I kept shushing her with my hand because I knew there was nothing, absolutely nothing, to say. It was time for him to just cry it out in his dad's arms as long as he needed to. I can't write about this on my blog because he reads it so I hope you'll understand my hijacking yours.

Hard to be a parent? Oh man, did you say a mouthful. But definitely worth every tear, every sleepless night and every sore shoulder from the times they cried on them.

WhiteStone said...

If I've said it before, I'll say it again. There should be a law for parents of adult children, that once a year you could have them back in their toddler sweetness for 24 hours. Yep. Love my kid. And I especially loved when she was a kid.

Debby said...

Oh, Bob. It's the hardest thing for a parent, because we do want to make everything perfect. But you know what? You can't live life without being disappointed. You will sometimes be discouraged. Your son knows who loves him unconditionally. And Bob? I've always said this: that a child's view of his Heavenly Father is shaped, in large part, by his view of his own father. Your boy got a wonderful glimpse of God last night. Good job, Dad.

WhiteStone? I'd vote for that law.

Bill, I'm glad you're grinning ~ your sweet pictures of Khalib have the very same effect on me.

Susan and BB ~ Good for you! I've always had no tolerance for tantrums in public. We always stopped right where we were, no matter what we were doing, and left the store. I once had half a shopping cart of groceries. I pushed it to the service desk, apologized and left. The thing is, truly, you do that once or twice, and the little hooligans learn that tantrums are pointless.

Anonymous said...

What a great post, debby. And a great thing to see.

steviewren said...

Debby, if your words weren't enough to produce tears then Bob had to share his dad loves child unconditionally story....well I'm crying now...

I miss the sweet little things about my children too. I miss seeing them everyday. I hate it that my grandchildren live elsewhere and my time is limited with them. That makes me ever more grateful that Rachel and Elijah live nearby. It is a blessing to see him so often. It does my heart good every time I kiss his sweet cheeks and see his dimpled little hands.

It's hard to be a mother for such a long time and then one day you wake up and find you can't be a mother anymore as much as it's time now to be your grown children's friend and fan.

quid said...

So funny and such a slice of human life. I salute the mom that left the store. We all hated to be in that moment.


Lori said...

Great entry!! It made me start thinking about things I "can't" remember too.

jeanie said...

I am busy conveniently forgetting every moment that equates to bad little kid moments!!

I keep looking at littlies in the throes of not so angelic behaviour and think "oh, thank goodness we are past that".

Amnesia is great - it means that I can blank out that apparently I have it all ahead of me again - PLUS there are teenage horror stories that I put my fingers in my ears and sing "la la la" loudly in the face of.

'Salina is currently wonderful - she has always been and will be so forever - allow me my pollyanna moments!!