Our mother-son relationship is shifting and changing as adolescence pushes him onward from little boy to man. It is exactly how it is suppose to be, and I do not expect him to remain a babe, but it doesn't make it any easier. There are days I joyfully anticipate his growing maturity, and there are days when I cry as time slips by quickly, forever gone.
And then there are days like last Thursday...when I cherish the gift of today.
A few more hours remained before our guests would arrive. The lists of preparations extended onto two sheets as the house needed a thorough cleaning inside and outside. Children scrubbed, swept, and dusted alongside of me. I doled out jobs as fast as they could finish them.
We were partway finished when I sent our oldest son outside to gather the dead hanging flowers. Heat and neglect were their downfall. Wilted and barren, the flower bags that once graced our fence with precious hues of white, purple and red had become an eye sore. They needed to go.
A few minutes later, I joined him outside to check the progress. All the bags were down, dirt and debris discarded, and bags gathered. Everything was in order, except two pretty purple blossoms. Over a misted covered glass table, these flowers trumpeted for attention.
They were lovely.
"Where these from one of the hanging bags?" I asked him.
"Yeah, I saved them," he replied walking up beside me.
"They are beautiful." I said. He reached for them. I stopped him. "Oh, don't move them. I want to photograph them right there."
Turning to retrieve my camera from inside, I heard him chuckle. He's use to my impetuous photographic efforts, and sometimes, like today, he joins me. "I think I'll get my camera, too."
For the next ten minutes we both stood, sat, and squatted. Both of us attempting to find the best angle and lighting to capture these purple petunias.
After showing one another our photos, I stepped back inside refreshed and ready to begin a new task. Briefly, I wondered what he had intended to do with those flowers before I interrupted with the photo frenzy.
An hour later, I began clearing the kitchen counters. As I slowly made my way around the corner, I saw them. Purple petals rising from the bottom of an old salt shaker. How beautiful! The light danced on each petal. I gasped. Could he have saved these for me?
My oldest son entered the room. Glancing over to him, I asked, "Are these for me?"
Sheepishly, he smiled, and ducked his head. As he lifted his gaze, he softly replied, "Yeah, Mom, they are for you."
For two days, they stood beside the fuzzy dandelion my youngest son had given me.
Both flower gifts equally cherished.
Allowing Them to Struggle