The boys remind me of my failures,as a mom, so often.Usually it is the same few ‘bad Mommy dearest moments. But still, I wish they did not have those to remember. I always respond in my defense, that there were 365 days in a year and they lived with me for 18 years, so just to have a few baddies in the midst of all the rest, I can’t have been that horrendous a mom.
When Lee started school I took a 3 day a week job with a church, and Brian went to pre school, other than that I was always home, with Lee and Brian. Then later with Evan, when the boys were both in school. I and the boys were always together, sometimes Keith joined in. Keith worked oilfield at first and spent a lot of after hours with ‘the guys’,the boys were babies then so they did not miss him much then. By the time they were toddlers he worked graveyard for the USPS and slept (or tried to) till 3 and then we started our ‘family’ time.
I was not a neat and tidy gotta have it allinplace kind of mom.Still not. I can remember them having tents intheir room,I must have set that up. We colored together. Built Lego junk. Played outside with the dogs and riding toys. I must have dumped and refilled the kiddie pool twice a day in the summer, between them peeing in it and the dogs swimming and shedding in it. Played in their oversized room with the Little Tykes slide, and teeter totter. We walked to the little ‘old stuff’ park at least once a week, stopping at the blue house to talk to the elderly man who would always call out to us. He would ruffle Lee’s hair, Lee would act silly and Brian would stare at him from the stroller, daring him , with those giant ,brown, introvert eyes, to just try and touch his head. We would go to their grandmothers house (my mother in law) to swim, THEY loved it. We made trips to my parents without Keith and just ‘do’ Lubbock and Ransom Canyon.
A lot of doctor visits and hospital visits arein the memory bank with the boys. Stitches, elbow’s out of socket, ear infections, well baby checks, asthma, and ‘Brian attacks'(undiagnosed Celiac) were our main reasons. Then Evan was born with Pierre Robin and also the search for reason of ‘Brian attacks’ became more intense. We made lots of trips to ‘real’ hospitals and doctors in Dallas. So vacations and memories became Six Flags and baseball games and shopping in big malls, and hotel rooms, and hospital waiting rooms.
I really loved being with the kids. Hated them to go to school. I wanted to homeschool them all, but as circumstances were, I only had opportunity to homeschool Evan. I did not like the school people telling me to feed my kids breakfast and wanting excuses of why I did not send them to school. They are MINE, if I want to starve them in the morning and send them to Tinbucktoo I can, it is no business of MISD!On Brian Attack days I loved having him home with me, except that he was sick, yet again, and we did not know why.
I wish the boys would remember the stuff I did good. Not the Chore Cards I made up for them to do their chores. They forget that their only chores were trash, clean room, unload dishes, and scoop dog poop, divided between the 2 then 3 of them. They forget because they never did their chores. 😉 . Not the PMS days, I did have them and I was nuts, but that really was only about 3 days a month, 3 out of 30 aint bad! AND I went and had surgery to fix it all, just for them!!! Not the spankings that went bad, because Leewould leap around trying to dodge the ‘bullet’ and get it in the wrong place. Why not remember our coming to his defense and making the Principle apologize for bruising him from hip to knee. Brian complains that I punished him 1st as an example to Lee, and ‘Lee made me do it anyway’. Yes, and it tore Lee up to be responsible for the punishment of Brian, andBrian needed to know how to make decisions on his own, good or bad. He does now, and most of them are good.
Evan is a bit of a different go back. The olders think he is lacking because I coddle too much. Maybe. But I think he has more than anyone expected him to have, because I pushed him really really hard. I wantedhim to be so much like his brothers, to have everything they did and would. The olders don’t see that the time spent pushing Evan was not the fun stuff they and I got to do. The playground with Evan I was pushing prodding, forcing ,him to climb, to cross bridges, to swing high. It scared him, it frustrated me, it was not fun. Growing up was not fun for Evan, Lee and Brian don’t see that.
If I might go back, it would be to tape it all, to make a documentary. To show them and myself (and my mother in law) how very much love was in our home. To show how many miracles happened everyday for our family. To show all we have accomplished. To show all the prayers I prayed and all the tears I have cried for my children. To show how God carried us through it all. I bet God has one we can see someday.
Ask the parents of grown up children
And they will tell you
It is better to be able to say “I am glad I did”
Than to have to say “I wish I had”
My hands were busy through the day
I did not have much time to play
The little games you ask me to
I did not have much time for you
I’d wash your clothes; I’d sew and cook
But when you’d bring your picture book
And ask me please to share your fun
I’d say “a little later son”
I’d tuck you in all safe at night
Hear your prayers and turn out the light
Then tiptoe softly to the door
I wish I had stayed a minute more
For life is short and years rush past
A little boy grows up so fast
No longer is he at your side
His precious secrets to confide
The picturebooks are put away
There are no children games to play
No goodnight kiss, no prayers to hear
That all belongs to yesteryear
My hands once busy now lie still
The days are long and hard to fill
I wish I might go back and do
The little things you asked me to
Alice A Chace