May 02, 2015

Wet Oatmeal Kisses.... A Poem for Moms on Mother's Day

Over the last few years I've tried to keep - An American Housewife, purely "recipes" and reviews.  There are many times I have wanted to veer off topic but I try hard to reign myself in!  However, I'm breaking my own rule this time as Mother's Day is right around the corner and I wanted to share something I've had hanging in our home(s) over the past 20 years that still, to this day, still makes me pause and read it and ponder.

The day I found this print in a tiny little quaint beach side shop, our family was on vacation and we were hot and tired and going to be heading back to the hotel so our 1 1/2 year old and 3 year old could take a nap before dinner.  My husband had no interest in any more little shops and the kids were more interested in the big stuffed gorilla sitting on a bench outside the store.  I very thankfully left the children with my husband and ducked into this little kitchen and knick-knack shop where I slowly wandered up and down the aisles looking all the wonderful little kitcheny goodies I couldn't afford.

It was in this little shop that I turned to leave and found myself looking at a  tall wire rack standing on the floor of the store.  It was filled with hand printed calligraphy and water color print flowers drawn and shaded in around them.  The prints were of various little poetry and prose - hand made by some local artist who found sayings and poems and printed them on these cardboard prints for sale.  They were not framed, it was just prints and they sold for $14.95.

As my eyes glazed over the poems and prose, I suddenly stopped when I started to skim this one.
My heart jumped in my chest.


Knowing I could never afford to spend $15, I put it back and left the store.
As I walked with my husband I told him about the poem.
I got tears in my eyes while telling him about it.

We went back to the store.

I used the credit card (inward groan) to pay for it as we had no money to spare at all.  But this print spoke to me at the time with words that went straight to my heart.  I protected that print in the suitcase and when we got home, I couldn't afford a frame so I propped it up and later hung it on the wall without one.

Twenty years later I still have it.  It hangs on my wall with the children's first year baby photos surrounding it - a reminder of how quickly they grow... and grew.  I still find myself stopping to read it every once in a while.  Some days I smile.  Some days I get choked up.  Some days I grin.

But I can tell you it's true.
Oh, so true.

To all the Mom's out there living this now...  Happy Mother's Day.

Wet Oatmeal Kisses

"The baby is teething; the children are fighting.  My husband just called and said to eat dinner without him." 
Okay, one of these days you'll shout:  
"Why don't you grow up and act your age!"  
And they will.  
Or "You guys get outside and find yourselves something to do... and don't slam the door!"  
And they won't.

You'll straight up their rooms neat and tidy... bumper stickers discarded... spreads tucked and smooth... toys displayed on the shelves... hangers in the closet... animals caged, and you'll say out loud:  
"Now I want it to stay that way." 
And it will.

You'll prepare a perfect dinner with a salad that hasn't been picked to death and a cake with no finger traces in it 
and you'll say, "Now there's a meal for company."  
And you'll eat it alone.

You'll say, "I want complete privacy on the phone.  No dancing around, no pantomimes, no demolition crews.  Silence!  Do you hear?"  And you'll have it.  No more plastic tablecloths stained with spaghetti, no more anxious nights under a vaporizer tent, no more dandelion bouquets, no more iron-on patches, knotted shoestrings, tight boots.

Imagine a lipstick with a point, no babysitter for New Year's Eve, washing clothes only once a week, no P.T.A. meetings, carpools, blaring radios, Christmas presents out of toothpicks and paste.  
No more wet oatmeal kisses.  
No more toothfairy, giggles in the dark, or knees to heal.

Only a voice crying, "Why don't you grow up?"  
And the silence echoing, "I did."

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You might also be interested in;

A Mother & Son, 8x10 Poem, Double-matted in Dark Green Over Burgundy And Enhanced With Watercolor Graphics. A Gift For A Mother, Son Or A New Mother.
To My Mom Framed Gift Poem

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