Tomorrow he turns six years old. My Luke, the incredible little boy who made me a Mommy. Somehow I feel like I will always owe him for that. I never would have thought I would love all that comes with one little word so intensely. But being "Mommy" to Luke has been such a ride.
I always knew that I wanted to be a mom, but I didn't ever think I'd every be a stay-at-home mom. I thought that being an educated women meant that I'd have children, but they'd be cared for by a loving care-giver each day while I did the grind of a typical work week. But the minute that I felt that first flutter of movement, everything I thought I knew was turned upside down. I just felt like I NEEDED to be with him, and witness his life in these early years. Becoming just "Mommy" was one of the easiest decisions I have ever made.
I have had the profound pleasure of watching him grow each and every day. I was there the first time he laughed, the first time he said a word, the first time he rolled over, the first time he crawled, the first time he took a step, the first time he used the potty, the first time he signed, the first time he jumped, the first time he rode a bike.... I have been there every single day.
He has pushed me, and stretched me, in ways that I never expected. He has forced me to be me... the real me. Not the sort of me that the world and society has told me I should be, but the me that was hidden and masked and cloaked underneath perceived pressures. How could my son have such power to tear down walls that I worked decades to build? He did it by being open and honest and pure and true to himself.
I have come to learn that children are so naturally, wonderfully open and vulnerable. It is through life's experiences, triumphs and traumas, that they start to hide themselves. When Luke was born I wanted him to always simply be. I wanted him to be himself. Laugh when he wanted to laugh, cry when he needed to cry, talk when he wanted to talk, etc. But as he grew I saw that he would imitate what Mitch and I would model. If we were open, and raw, and real, then Luke would be. If we were closed, and reserved, and cold, then Luke would be. So, I had to change myself, if I wanted Luke not to have to change himself.
Luke has taught me so much about myself but I know that there is so much more to learn. I always told him that I would try to be better each and every day... a better mommy. Somedays, I am an awesome mom. Others, well, I feel like a failure to him. But the love that this little blonde boy gives to me is so vast that it encourages me to keep striving for better, as I feel so undeserving so much love. I am so proud of him. His interests, and dreams are so varied and broad. His passion and empathy for this planet and the creatures on it is nothing short of awe inspiring. His imagination and creativity is ever present. He is definitely a unique little being and I feel so incredibly blessed to be his Mommy.
Tomorrow he turns six years old. Hearing his little voice call me "Mommy" is something I will cherish as I know it soon will be just plain old "Mom" sooner than I would like.