There are two lasting bequests we can give our children. One is roots. The other is wings. ~Hodding Carter, Jr.
You know you’re mourning the loss of a house full of men when you listen to gun blazing movies for background noise just to bring the testosterone level up in the room. That is where I am these days. I thought I’d look forward to having a clean, organized house, less laundry, groceries that remain in the fridge longer than 24 hours and falling asleep before midnight without hearing food craving raids in the kitchen after one a.m.
Truth is. I miss it all. The chaos, the forced gut belching, the sudden grappling that would have them sprawled across the floor and me grabbing at furniture that risks being flung about and the musical thumping of floors and walls behind closed doors. My floors are clean for longer stints and the bathrooms aren’t growing mold so readily, but the silence is deafening, sickening really and saddening. All the rubber band weapons of wild, friendly wars have been removed from behind furniture, inside planters and are no longer dangling from or becoming crisp within light fixtures.
I’m told I’ll find something that will define me beyond just being a mom. Find myself. So far, I’ve just found all the accumulated dust I’d never gotten to over the years. And I have found more places to put my things. I have an entire room that I can dedicate to just my clothes if I please and spare rooms to accommodate guests properly. I’d be a catnip high kitty, if my kids were said guests. Pitiful isn’t it~ this longing I have to go back to what was?
But it is me. It’s the juncture in life I’m currently at. Figuring out life and sweeping up and holding on to wonderful memories. The house may seem empty, the rooms nearly cleaned out, but the heart swells with admiration and love for four wonderful beings that my husband and I created and had to let go of. Perhaps that can now be spilled over and contained within the creases and crevices I’ve been able to clean out.
So, I guess until I find out what it is I am other than just “mom”, I’ll just watch from sidelines as moms often do and keep rooting for my guys. I’ll witness the belching and wrestling matches less often, but the joy will be equally matched to that of the past. The rubber bands will accumulate in a drawer, I’ll hear the settling of the walls and I’ll have further to walk to get to my clothes in the morning. But, in the end, I’m grateful for the honor to be called mom. Their mom.
When you have brought up kids, there are memories you store directly in your tear ducts. ~Robert Brault