Drifts and curls of the scent of warmed sweet cinnamon hit my nose. It was carried over the dry, sterile scent of department store laundering.
In the cushy haven of the heaven that comes with being the only child to hold your Mother’s hand, (when there are at least four more in line vying for the same privilege) my, “Toucan Nose” that smelled the irresistible aroma of sweet and spicy cinnamon died as soon as I felt a shift in the muscles of my Mother’s palm and, she veered off into a new circus ring of wonder and curiosity.
My Mother’s hand guided me amid tables sparkling with faux rhinestone pins, necklaces, bracelets and earrings, wafts of synthetic perfumes swirling and whirling around me as I stood on a platform of washed out linoleum, feeling like Alice of Wonderland, I gripped the warm and calloused clutch of my Mother’s hand for dear life.
In the harshly lit world, she was a bubble of safety, peace and calm. By the mere touch of my Mother’s hand, I went from feeling overwhelmed and cranky to feeling Zen. As long as my Mother was close by, proximity of a couple of feet, I could wander off to touch the clean, pressed rack clothes and, even dare to hide in a ring of clothes.
Because it made me giggle, because I wanted to know if she noticed I was gone, how long it would take for her to notice, I would sit in a circle of department store clothes, not very quiet for all the snorts and giggles that escaped, thinking I was quiet, not knowing the background noise of the store and life would mask my voice, I hid.
My Momma always found me, (except for one time…but that’s another story) Isn’t that the very most, very best feeling in your entire world?
Momma found you because, she loves you. Momma knows where you are because; her heart and your heart are linked and beat together.
It’s a song that, no matter how old we are, how far away we are, how many fights and differences we have, you want to hear, always and even on repeat, forever more.
My Momma would finish with her shopping and she would grab my hand in hers and I would be so glad to feel her softness and warmth, needed the hello. I didn’t like it always but, it let me know that there were rules, boundaries and that I had a safe harbor, a place to touch to be, “Safe” when I ran from home.
Hand in hand, we walked across tiles and I was free to turn my head and owlish eyes on all I saw. I took in the aroma of a pipe shop. I saw gems wink and took in wafts of perfume. I openly stared at everyone, unabashedly, unless my Momma’s voice directed me to do otherwise.
“Isn’t that pretty, Beckie?”
“Do you see that, Beckie?”
My name was a song of love that came from my Mother’s lips, especially when it was just the two of us. I was a special hug, a dream, hope, moment. She was all of that, more and mine. Mine. A dream I could call my own. No one to share with, I could just be with MY Mom.
When I felt like I would burst from being confined by Momma’s rules and boundaries, she would take my hand in hers and we would walk toward what I knew was the Cinnabon stand. I could smell it before I saw it. My feet would beg me to skip across the tiled floors of the mall to that stand. It was my reward for, “behaving”, even if I felt I did not behave perfectly, I was rewarded with Cinnabon.
As my Momma and I approached the Cinnabon stand, I would stand by her, being a good girl, somber, quiet, trying not to jump with excitement, trying to be, “lady-like”.
I would watch, avidly, as my Momma would purchase our Cinnabon, just one iced roll. She seemed so grown-up. Watching her gave me the feeling of wearing my Momma’s clacking high heels, so important, brisque, mature, womanly. I would don my Mother’s high heels, wear them out to the street and step heavily just so I could hear that clack because, it was so poignant and meaningful . I felt the same way when my Momma effortlessly ordered our Cinnabon, I felt so proud and full of admiration, I wanted to be just like her, sure, womanly, sweet, polite, commanding, like a Princess.
My Momma would politely wait for our order, I would stand next o her, already salivating in anticipation for the treat.
My Momma would carry our one Cinnabon to a table. We would sit down and we would split it and, my Momma would look at me and ask me questions and listen to me and I would ask her questions and I would listen to her and we would be in a frozen minute of time of happiness that never lasted as long as I desperately wanted it to but, it’s okay.
It would never have been as special and sweet and sacred if those moments lasted forever.
Recently, a “grown” woman, I told my Mom that every time I passed a Cinnabon, I remembered her and she responded, in text, LOL.
I wish I knew what was so funny but, I think that she’s remembering me, as a little girl, her little girl and, how funny I was because I was so earnest about being grave and well-spoken.
I remember all of those moments, having been made fresh, wanting to be so much more sensitive and focused on my child. How precious and dear it is to have the person you love most in the world, beam their attention on you.
It is difficult to remember to do so every day and, as much as I want and wish to spend every second thrilling and soaking and appreciating and loving my boy, I can’t and, maybe, just maybe, it’s better that way.
One day, we’ll have moment s to look upon, me and My Son. We’ll have good times and bad times and all the times in between. He’ll have moments he treasures and I’ll have mine. If every moment we lived together was a sparkly, special moment, it wouldn’t be so special and sparkly. I only hope, HOPE, HOPE, HOPE, (please, Dear God, Dear Lord, help me love the spirit of the child you have entrusted me with and give him tenderness, love and joy) that I give him MANY memories of love and joy in his life, to equal or overcome all the sorrows.
I failed today. I have so much to learn and I hope that it doesn’t cost my little darling too much.
All I wanted, all I needed was to know that my Momma wanted to find me, wanted to laugh, loved me enough to play and go on adventures with me. It didn’t matter where we were. Knowing I could run into my Momma’s arms…My Momma…my Home…that was enough, all I ever wanted.
I want that to be the rock my Son builds his foundation on. Colin is in charge of the walls and roof but, Mark and I, we help with the foundation.
We only desire to prove worthy through our love and from all that we learned from those who love us and raised us.
We hear you…we remember all the good, the bad and, we forgive and try.
Hey, we’re not so bad, right? We’re good kids, aren’t we? You let go, reluctantly, and we walked on our own.
We’re smart but, we make mistakes.
Those are our mistakes and, we’re not always proud of them but, we OWN them.
You know what?
You know why?
Because, YOU LOVE US. You have ALWAYS loved us.
You can trust us.
Because, you loved us so well.
We love our Son, your Grandchild like CRAZY.
He’s OUR torchlight.
Let us have our time, let us carry our burdens, let us make our mistakes, let us learn and have our pride from learning, loving and failing. Let us pass that on to our Son.
Let our love flow and pass down to Colin.
Our hands, holding Colin’s hands, bear all the seconds, minutes, hours, days, months and years, smiles, tears, trials, tribulations, lessons and praises that you have passed onto us.
Mark and I are resilient. We are intelligent and we are stubborn, compassionate and loving. Love, love, love is the core. We argue, we misunderstand, we get lost but, our hearts stay at home with lights on. You gave that to us. You helped us. You have given that to us to give to our grandchildren and THAT, is your legacy.
Thank you for believing in us…
Thank you for allowing us to grow on our own…
Thank you for giving us our space
Thank you for giving us counsel
Thank you for loving us in all the bitter and sweet…
Thank you for showing us how.
Thank you for being an example, good or bad or both..
Thank you for Cinnabon, Mom.
Time makes you bolder
2 weeks ago