My date was with my delightful eight-and-a-half-year-old son, Adam. It's a favorite family tradition that on their "half birthday" the boys get to go on a date with Mom (our daughter will have a special date with Dad when she's old enough). The half-birthday boy gets to plan the entire evening, and for once, in our noisy family, it's all about him. (Okay, not the purse shopping. I talked him into it, I confess.). I have brief one-on-one moments with my kids throughout the day, but extended times like these are all too rare in our family of six. What a treasure these times are.
Tonight Adam took me to Subway (his favorite), and as always happens when I have a quiet moment with one of my children, I'm amazed at what mature little people they are becoming. He was so excited to be spending an evening with me (I know, he likely won't feel this way in five years, so I'll enjoy it while it lasts)--he was grinning so big he could barely chew. We talked about his friends, his favorite subjects and his new Christmas toys. He quoted his favorite movie lines. When he saw people step outside to smoke, he expressed concern that their "lungs were turning black".
When we adjourned to Sonic for ice cream, we sat in the car and listened to his favorite songs. Then he turned the music down. He turned to me very pensively and said, "Mom, I have a question for you. What is your favorite thing to do?" I opened my mouth to answer, and he interrupted, "And don't say 'be our mom' or 'talk to dad'. I mean fun stuff." I sat there, choked with emotion at the thought that my eight-year-old boy was wanting to know more about me--the "me" that is apart from my role as wife and mother. I told him my answer, and he told me his, and our wonderful conversation went on for quite some time.
In priceless moments like these, I think of Mary in the second chapter of Luke: "But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." You know that she, like all of us moms, had a stockpile of precious moments deep in her soul--moments so perfect that they were almost too moving to express aloud. These are the moments we mull over in the stressful or monotonous times. When we're discouraged, or frustrated, or lonely, we pull them out of the deepest part of heart to remind ourselves why we fight, why we work, why we love. It's so worth it.
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