I slept in. That’s right Ad, I blissfully slept and woke up AFTER the sunrise, a rather unusual occurrence for me. You crawled into my bed, snuggled in close and proceeded to play with my eyelashes. Your purposeful, yet curious touch to my eyes is in your own way a sign of your affection. It was Mother’s day and I couldn’t think of a better way for it to start it.
As soon as you knew I was now indeed awake you snuck off to grab a book, but I’d only find this out when you return. Meanwhile, you and Gabe were like ships passing as he was bringing me breakfast in bed. After last years strawberry granola parfait - where he stated as I was almost finished “I m glad you liked it, I didn’t use the furry strawberries!” I was curiously (maybe even a little cautiously) awaiting what would be on the menu this year?
Never to disappoint, he came around the corner with the largest pile of pancakes I’ve ever seen. 8 tall with a huge glob of butter towered on top! Doing my best pretending to be only groggily (is that even a word?) awake, I witnessed the butter tumble down the tower of a nap on a plate, to which Gabe grabbed with his fingers strategically placing it back on top before happily handing me the plate and saying Happy Mother’s Day.
Seriously love this kid.
Clara came in next with my coffee, you returned with a Doc Mcstuffins book for a quick storytime, then I was showered with amazing cards and gifts!
Clara and Gabe even pooled their money together to buy me a gift card to Target ;)
All of this was just the icing on the cake because I honestly need no gift for this day because having this family is really all the gift I could ever need (well that and of course our traditional Jason Menzo made from scratch pina coladas;)
Even with my repetitiveness of gifts not being necessary, Clara and Gabe ask every year for gift suggestions, so I like to have a little fun with them ;)
Now this mommy fun consists of me telling you all something to see if it gets back to daddy correctly. Kind of a game of family “telephone.” This year I requested Lady Walton cookies in chocolate mint and chocolate raspberry. I know crazy specific right?! This particular discussion took place roughly two months before this weekend and every time I asked if Clara or Gabe remembered the name it got funnier and funnier! Women fingers, lady waters, lady wontons - the list was hysterically long, but the name was never 100% correct. So I was truly shocked when I, in fact, opened my beloved Lady Walton cookies this weekend! Come to find out daddy overheard the whole conversation and was on it! Yes Ad, he’s that good ;)
With our morning off to a great start, it was time for church and emotion I truly didn’t see coming.
Let me start out by saying last week I happen to come across another fellow special needs mamas vlog and she was talking about grief and sadness and how it can hit you when you least expect it.
There we were at church, sitting in our usual spot, except there was a wealth of new faces among our familiar crowd. It wasn’t just Mother’s Day but also the first of a few weekends of first holy communion for many 2nd graders in our faith.
With such a large crowd and additional commotion, daddy decided to walk you around a bit to ease any potential anxiety and stress. As I sat with Clara and Gabe we watched a sea of beautiful girls in white dresses and well dressed young men line up one by one to receive their blessed sacrament. I started thinking back to Clara’s and Gabe’s communion and could remember the details of it all so vividly.
Then unexpectedly it hit me - I was overcome by sadness as I held back my tears trying my best not to make a scene of myself in front of all these new people.
Working at the school I've come to recognize just about all those sweet faces and some being dear friends taking communion. I was SO proud and happy for them, but I also felt gut-punched all at the same time.
I wanted this for you.
I didn’t see any of them trying to splash in the baptismal font or blow out the candles yelling “happy birthday!” and clapping to the accomplishment of extinguishing the flame. Something I would put money on that would happen if you were up there on this day.
I know it’s all perspective, and I know there’s an alternate version in all this. You can do it at a later date, with a sponsor - I’m sure the accommodations are all there, but sometimes, just sometimes not needing any special accommodations, curious eyes or an exit strategy is something dare I say I want.
I wanted you to know what this was even all about. I wanted you to have an opinion on what your dress looked like or what shoes you wore. I wanted you to feel the warmth and love of this day with everybody else your age as it’s intended.
As you can imagine these feelings can easily turn into a weighted blanket of guilt, but I try to remember that it’s just human nature to want what we don’t have.
On the way home I tried to remember perspective. It’s a beautiful humbling thing. While the big picture in that moment left me sadden, I thought back to our morning. I had to wonder how many mamas would’ve loved the opportunity for their 8 yr old to share snuggles or unspoken moments with them. Moments that had no words but unmeasurable love.
It’s so often the older our children get, the more fleeting these moments become and we end up longing for them again. I'm blessed to still be in the thick of these moments with you. This my dear is very special to me.
So, Addie, we didn’t put on a white dress this weekend, but one day we will and I’m sure you will have an entire community of people there loving and supporting you and I’ll be crying for a whole different reason on your day.
I don’t have the answers on why our journey is what it is, I can’t stop moments that will inevitably gut punch me no matter how hard I try. That’s life. There is still so much I don't understand and heck I may never fully understand it, but if there is one thing Daddy and I are 100% for certain of is we were all meant to be together, Clara, Gabe, You, mommy and daddy - One Team, One Dream in this life.
Thank you for blessing me with getting to be your mama sweet girl.
I love you.