With Love, Little Me
This is a story to my mom from little me that I wrote for her a few months ago – I wanted to remind her that her love was felt back then – and still is today. She adored it, and said she could barely read it through her teary vision.
As I puff my coat out and in to smell the aroma of the air I left minutes ago – the smell of face cream over powers and I instantly think back to my mother and how we just hugged and kissed goodbye – The bus ride is bumpy and with every stop welcomes more and more kids – as well as an unwelcome blast of fresh air. I worry that the smell of you will wear off by the time I get to school – it usually does. I lick the corners of my mouth – little bit of breakfast is left. Wouldn’t it be so cool to ride a horse to school? This thought floods my mind and I begin wishing to God that one day I could ride a horse to school. Gosh how cool that would be…..?
As instructed I line up me behind him, him behind her ……I fidget with my gloves feeling the weight of my bag, wondering why my shoulders hurt when I’m only carrying my lunch box. I am me, out in the world without you – and suddenly I think about you and what you are doing. I follow you to your room where you get ready for the day – and then to the kitchen – you clink and clank with dirty and clean dishes – the sound of the fridge door opening and closing. I puff my coat and smell your cream – you’re in the family room now – folding the blankets.
The classroom was always too bright for my eyes – the way I had to ask to use the bathroom and sit with slimy boys that I didn’t like always made me long to be home with you. My pencil snaps like it usually does – it’s ok though – I always enjoy trips to the sharpener because I get to stand next to the window and look outside to the big green field – Sometimes the tip would keep breaking and I would shrug and keep turning the spool. I start to day dream – A blanket big enough to cover the whole field – half Nonna-Gina’s crochet, and half my troll bed spread. A basket whirls in with square cut sandwiches juice boxes and cookies. Then there’s mom and me, sharing a beautiful lunch in the middle of the field on our ginormous blanket. I say something and mom giggles – we dance under the sun – our sun dresses swaying in the breeze. Mine is orange and hers is blue – there’s no music, but we dance to the beat – the beat of our hearts maybe. We’re happy.
I take my pencil out and see that I’ve sharpened so long the tip has become half my pencil – at least the led feels sturdy this time. I slink back to my desk – I always hated the way people stared when I walked back to my desk – and how the chairs felt on my bum – I wondered why they couldn’t put cushions down .. Maybe it was in case people pee’d their pants. “Red”…..I “red” a book. Could it be spelt the same way as RED? As we were instructed to do when confused – I timidly approached the teacher and asked her how to spell “READ” – she let out a huge huff and smirk with a comment like “you can’t possibly mean the colour red!?” making it obvious that she was amazed that maybe, I didn’t know how to spell such a simple grade 1 word. I told her no, I meant “like reading” and she kindly wrote down the letters R E A D in my Words I Don’t Know book.
I escape to the closet and shed a few tears – I think about my mom and how she would have responded to me. How she would have smiled and sat with me and spelled out the words …Why do I have to be here. My mom can teach me all I need to know. All I want is to hug her. The closet doors are so big – the size of the entire wall – so when they are shut it is very dark. I liked this dark – I always felt safe in there with all the coats surrounding me. I wipe my face as much as I can and slip out and back into my desk.
R E A D….. “I read a book” I whisper under my breath.
By noon my clothes have been totally exposed to and have retained the school air. Lunch time makes my heart flutter – I know only a couple more hours and I’ll be home. I open my lunch box and my heart flutters more than it did when I checked the time – I pull out a little note from my mom. I smile, and put it back in quickly close the lunchbox, then open it again slowly. Peeking in at it my heart fills up – I don’t want anyone to see it – so I just stare through this crack in the box – I open it just enough to flip it over and read it – It says “I Love You” on the back. The note is in a shape of a heart and it has eyes, nose, a mouth arms legs and even hair! The hair is made of string. I giggle. I instantly know it’s from my Mom. I start picturing her making it – thinking of me. When did she do this? She must have been up late…My mom misses me just as much as I miss her – she even sent a note telling me she loves me and can’t wait to see me after school. I take the little heart note and fold it into my pocket. I marvel at how crafty my mom is – and wonder if anyone else’s mom is as crafty and thoughtful as mine. I bet nobody has notes from their mom – maybe I have the BEST mom in the world I think. I keep the note in my pocket and hold my hand to it whenever I can. I eat my ham and pickle sandwich, tapping my foot, picturing you over the counter carefully putting it together – slicing the pickles, folding the ham.
Everything else is a mess of sites and sounds – before I know it I’m on the bus home and all I can think about is my Mom’s pretty face and her smile when she sees me. The kitchen is full of warmth – the air I’ve missed so much dances around my body – I want it to seep into me –forever. The table is set for ..a party? Did I forget about Ashely’s birthday? No. It was an ordinary day – On the table there is a platter of crackers and cold cuts all neatly rolled up one beside the other – our red tape player with the microphone sits on the table as well. She tells us to come sit down for a snack – and we press play –mickey mouse club cassette blares through the kitchen and we sit and wobble to the beat – enjoying every bite – smiling and giggling-we can’t get enough. I thought – When I was thinking of mom, she was thinking of me. She was preparing this snack for me, just like she was when she made me the note today.
I wonder if she felt me missing her… She looks at us and smiles asking us if it’s good, we smile back and say yes and continue our childish chatter. The room is full of love and the day is now complete. I am home. With my Mom. Together. She loves me. And I love her.I sit tapping my foot against the chair legs……looking out the back window – I smile.
Longing to be with my mom was all that I ever thought about – her love filled my heart in more ways than she can ever even imagine so. Her smell, her touch, her voice – her kind gestures, efforts and willingness to be there for me always shown through – no matter how old I get I always long to feel her warmth – her love – the love she showed me every day growing up.
Sitting at that kitchen table there was no doubt in my mind that I had the best mom in the world – and in that moment, I wished that I could be with her every day for the rest of my life………………I wished to God even more than my dream and wish of riding a horse to school.