So last week my babies were gone for Spring Break. We dropped them at my Mom’s house and started off my birthday week with a staycation in Dallas with my hubby and an amazing meal at The Capital Grille (a Chicago fave) with sweet friends. I was treated to a pedicure (thanks Meesh!), bought myself some new shoes and a facial, and then spent the next week pretty much doing whatever I wanted to do.
Stay up till 2 am and watch the entire “Sex and the City” DVD set? Check. Sleep till 11 am? Check. Go shop in all those stores that are impossible to take a stroller or toddler in? Check. Flip through all the magazines I never get to read? Check. Truthfully, yes, it was bliss having all that sweet freedom.
But about halfway through the week I started to really miss them. And as I drove back to my Mom’s house I found myself grinning from ear to ear just thinking about reuniting with them.
Charlie was waiting for me – and promptly wrapped herself around me – all spindly legs and soft, olive-y skin. “Mommmmmmmeeeeeyyyyyy, Mommmmmmmeeeeeyyyyyy” she repeated over and over as she buried her little face in my neck. Ah, if felt good to be needed again.
About a half hour later my Dad got Ella up from her nap and she came running in on the pads of her feet, screaming “Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!” and flashing that gap-toothed smile I love so much. I snatched her up (forgetting that at 2 she is still less than 25 pounds) and held her close, taking in that still baby smell and kissing her tiny features. Her first words to me were “I’m Minnie Mouse!”, which she said over and over again in her post-nap gravelly voice. Sweet girl.
We had a pretty uneventful drive back and of course they were both thrilled to be home, back in their rooms and beds and ready to play with all of their favorite toys. And somehow, they both looked so much bigger to me. You know how that happens? It almost takes your breath away – all this time I wished and prayed for Ella to talk and now she’s saying full sentences and I can actually converse with her. So strange, and beautiful, and bittersweet at the same time.
So I’ll always be the one who recognizes the not-so-pretty sides of being a Mom. I can commiserate with the best of ‘em. But I can also appreciate when my heart is full and my family is healthy and home and asleep in these beds and oh, how good all of that feels.