Two weeks from today our Sweet Sofia, a newly minted three-year-old, will walk through the doors of preschool and the Dale family will enter into a new season. I didn’t think that it would bother me until the melancholy hit last Friday and I began to realize all the changes our family would be facing. I’ve become sentimental, wishing I could apply the brakes in the face of this sea of change.
I spent the last weekend processing all that I was feeling; shifting between worrying about the coming changes and alternatively reminding myself that things weren’t really going to be all that different. You see, I wasn’t just struggling with the reality of my baby being old enough for preschool; I was also struggling with my 8 year old third grader and envisioning her being just years from High School.
But that wasn’t all.
At 41 years of age I could honestly say I’ve enjoyed three years of one of the biggest blessings of my life and things were about to change.
One afternoon in 2014, with a belly rounded from my pregnancy, mom called and told me she’d like to watch Sofia after she was born and I was ready to return to work. Her offer was an unexpected blessing as I had struggled with sending our oldest (Eva) to daycare. In fact I struggled so much with it that Rob had to be the one to drop Eva off in the mornings because I couldn’t stand to. I had not been looking forward to sending Sofia.
For the last three years my mom has showed up every morning at our home – while the sky is still dark and before Rob and I head to work. I cannot begin to tell you of the countless ways she has helped us. Whether it’s making the beds, or folding our laundry my mother has served us with such a gracious and giving heart. She has been that extra pair of hands that gets us out the door in the morning, that is there to wake up my little girl long after Iv left for the day, or to keep an eye on them both when they are sick and daddy and I must be at work. Grandma is not outdone by snow days or icy roads and loves the idle days of summer vacation!
Mom has an amazing relationship with my husband and her bond with our girls makes me tear up just thinking about it. And, can I say that our relationship has grown richer and richer in the process? Although she tells me it almost daily she shows me each hour in our home how much she loves me.
My mornings are measured by the sound of the garage door opening and the dog greeting her. I know my Momma’s here before I even walk down the stairs and her presence is a comfort to me. You see, she’s not just taking care of my girls but she’s also taking care of me and how fortunate am I at 41 to have such a gift.
And while Sofia is only going to preschool twice a week and grandma will still be there the other three days, it occurred to me that this fall will be the first time in three years that I won’t see my mom every morning before I head to work. The realization rocked my world and made me a little sad.
Her presence has been reassuring; even though we often get to chatting to the point where I am running late. Having my children see her each morning and afternoon brings me joy and reassures me that they are well cared for even when I’m working. I also know that mom will look out for my husband, encouraging him to take a quick nap before I get home and reassuring him when I’m on a tear. And there are my boys – a dog lover too, mom has always been there for treats, ear scratches and lots of love. She talked me through our decision to put our older dog (Barney) down this spring. Mom had been there too and our Barney was like her own dog. Truthfully, I’m not sure how our young Peak will do without grandma’s daily presence – he needs her too. Just like the rest of us.
It feels like there’s so much to say and yet I’ve not been able to adequately put it to words. In fact, I’m off my normally “posting schedule” just because I needed to be able to process it all – and I’m stillnot fully there yet.
I’ll let mom have the final word as she cheered Eva on while she learned to ride her bike this summer. Good job momma, good job! We love you and thank you for all you do.