Growing up, I don’t remember my mother ever sitting with me to do homework. She never walked me to school. I can’t recall her ever taking me to the park as a young child either, but I do know that she was always “there”. The evidence of her existence was generously sprinkled throughout my childhood in the most humble of ways. Like how she would cut up fresh fruit every single morning for my brother and I to put on our cereal. Or how she never complained about endlessly chauffeuring me to and from figure skating lessons. And throughout my preteen years, she never missed our Monday night routine of getting comfy in her bed and watching Degrassi High together.
In 2005, I became a mother. My beautiful boy was born six weeks early. The first weeks of his life were spent in the NICU and the Children’s Hospital. As a first time mom, I was exhausted, stressed and ragingly hormonal. When I sobbed like a crazy person because all of my son’s baby clothes were too big, it was my mother who ran out and found special preemie sized sleepers, onesies and hats. Fast forward to today and that little preemie is now a lanky ten year old with a seven year old brother and a three year old sister. My mother loves being a grandmother more than Kim Kardashian loves being herself. She never hesitates to watch the kids if I need to pick up a shift at work and actually pays attention when they talk endlessly about Pokemon. Ironically enough, the thought of my children going to the park unattended makes my mother nauseous and you better believe that she’d rather cut off her own arm than let my boys get off their school bus and walk the treacherous two minutes to our house alone. Although my mom’s grandparenting style varies greatly from how she parented, it’s obvious that her love for both me and my children has been and always will be “there”
The older I get, the more I realize that I’m turning into my mother. It’s not just the newly sprouted grey hairs on the top of my head that remind me of her, it’s the countless little things that I do as a mom on a daily basis. From cutting up fresh fruits to pack in their lunches, to driving them to all of their activities, to watching AFV together religiously on Sunday evenings. I do all of these tasks because, like my mother, I want my kids to know that I am “there”.
In the future, as my children face the tumultuous teenage years and the trials and triumphs of becoming adults, I hope they’ll know that they can come to me with anything. From dating to drinking and to one day having children of their own, my goal is to emulate my mom and to always be “there”.