To Momma, the one we now call “Grandma,” thank you.
Just thank you, because I understand now.
I remember when I didn’t. I remember when I asked you why you didn’t “do anything” as a moody, sassy teenager. You were a stay-at-home-mom. I can’t imagine how that must have hurt you.
But you know what else I remember?
I remember playing library, bringing you book after book after book to “check out.” Back then, there were pockets on the inside cover of books and a note card that we would have to remove and sign with a pen. You made up a similar system with index cards, scotch tape, and construction paper, and you were my hero.
I remember endless empty plates and cups I brought to you. You ate my imaginary creations with excitement and encouragement every single time.
I remember you sitting on the floor WITH ME while we colored TOGETHER. I don’t remember doing it alone.
I remember watching you put on your mascara with a clean makeup brush in my hand.
I remember “helping” you (aka making the process 10x slower) fold towels. It took me forever to learn your special way to do it, but now I think of you with every load of laundry.
I remember freshly baked chocolate chip cookies EVERY first day of school right when I got off the bus. Heck, I remember that you were just there when I got off the bus, cookies or not.
I remember long talks about anything and everything. You were always available, even when I wished you would stop telling me that, haha. You’re still always here.
I remember getting lost with you on the way to gymnastics meets before the days of accurate GPS navigation. I remember how you wouldn’t get frustrated. Nope, you would laugh. And you’d listen to me belt out every word of Carrie Underwood’s very first album the whole ride with no complaints. Honestly, forget the competitions. I remember you peering through the window at every practice, cheering me on with a smile on your face.
And maybe there were a few, Momma, but I can’t remember a single track meet, volleyball, basketball, softball, or soccer game that you weren’t at....with Tylenol and a snack ready to go, because you knew my nerves would eventually give me a massive headache.
I remember you as the “room mom.” Nowadays, Pinterest would have me believe that you can’t just be the room mom, but you have to also craft mini Mona Lisa’s by hand for every thing you bring in. But ya know what, all of my classmates always told me YOUR brownies were the best, so I think that means you’re just smarter for using the boxed kind.
I remember the “Special Day” plate on my birthday, and the incredibly thoughtful scavenger hunts you & dad would plan for my parties.
I remember how you would ask me to explain the plot of whatever dumb teeny-bopper show I wanted to watch, and you sat down to watch it with me. It was enough to keep my heart in check without being threatening. You were so wise.
I remember when my older brother and I got in a car accident as high-schoolers. He was nervous to call home at first, but I knew the first thing you would say was “Is everyone okay, sweetheart?”
I remember how it didn’t take much convincing to get you to drive me to Nashville as a 16-year old. You believed in me, even if the judges at American Idol didn’t.
I remember the bazillion movie dates we went on together & I fully blame you for my addiction to Coca-Cola Icees.
I remember how date night and getaways for you and dad were sacred plans that could not be infringed upon, and your commitment to planning these made a greater impression on me than you realize.
Gosh Momma, there’s so much I remember.
I can’t help but wonder if you remember it the same way?
Because now that I’m here, baby girl on my hip 99% of the time, what I remember most is my exhaustion, my dirty house, my short bandwidth for patience, and all the ways I’m failing.
It just makes me wonder, did anyone tell you what a rockstar you truly were? Because of all I remember, I remember most that you were present. You were so ALL THERE momma, and I knew it. My heart knows it still.
I can’t believe I ever asked you why you didn’t “do anything.” The truth is, you did it ALL.
And you did what mattered most: You saw me, you loved me, you were intentional to learn about me, and you led me with grace to the cross of Jesus Christ.
I love you.