At first I tried to reason. I tried to encourage. I tried to bribe. And then, with her little hand in mine, we took Hallie's violin and came back home and I asked Hazel what she wanted to do today, with me. "Ride my bike around the block" was her excited reply, which made my heart hurt because it was something I had promised to do with her on Friday after finishing the laundry. Of course we ran out of time, and then I told myself we would do it on Saturday. And then of course I told myself we would do it on Sunday. Here we were, four days later and all that little girl wanted in the whole world was to go on a bike ride with her mom.
I've been crying again lately about not having any more babies in my home or in my arms. I am pretty reasonable about it most of the time. Cleaning through my closet a few days ago I found a bag full of baby items that I purchased years ago, convincing myself that they would be gifts for friends who have babies. But friend after friend had babies and I could not bring myself to let them go. Maybe I'll get there someday, but on this Monday even though I really wanted to be at yoga, I realized (again, this recurring lesson I keep needing) that yoga will be there next week, and the week after that.
But Hazel? The way she was today, on that bike, with this weather? This will never happen for me again. Like her older sisters before her, she will be off and away and I will be left, home alone, with a pile of brand new baby toys that I never gave away.
The wind was blustery and it rained on us for about half our ride, but we stopped and picked up a friend and had some good talks on the way.
"Sonja! Sonja! I have to tell you something! One time, my dad went to the grocery store. And he forgot his watch. So he didn't even know what time it was!"
"Mom! Mom! Is this a stick... or a dead worm?" Which led to a long and thoughtful, in the way of 3 year olds, conversation about how worms die.
"Mom! Stop!! I need that stick! Could you grab it for me, and carry it for me please?!" (This stick actually was a stick. She has named it "Sticky" and says it belongs in her bedroom.)
Last night as we snuggled before bed she told me in a very solemn voice, "Mom, it's really hard being three."
Last Monday we were driving home from our quick trip out to Utah for Uncle Ken to get married to Aunt Kathryn. The weather was lovely, and so were the bride and groom. I don't have an abundance of love in my heart for Utah, but Temple Square did soften it a little. Thanks for a great weekend, Rose Family!
Two Mondays ago my mom and dad were in town, and Devin was out of town. That Monday morning was brisk and chilly, the wind hard at work pulling leaves and swirling them around before dropping them lightly on the still green grass. My mom and I had plans, and our plans had plans, and we were planning to make more plans. She took my car and drove my girls to school and then stopped by Hy-Vee to pick up some things necessary for carrying out our plans. This is what we do when she comes to visit.
I was in the kitchen, trying to get three things started so we could get a jump on our plans. That was our plan so everything could be rolling along smoothly when she got home with the items needed for our other plans. It's exhausting to be my mom and me when she comes to visit.
I was still in my pajamas, bouncing around the house trying to think five steps ahead but never sure where I actually was at any given moment when I heard my phone ring. I had no idea where my phone was, so on and on it rang and I was elbow deep in apples. Or tomatoes. Or strawberries. Or... probably a bit of all three, actually. I was feeling guilty for not going along to help my mom get the carpet cleaning supplies, but she was a grown woman and surely could handle it. But, a gasp of breath and stalled movement: What if she were the one that had been calling?
My dad, in the other room, already working on his computer, answered his phone when it began ringing. I could tell it was my mom. I could tell there was trouble. "Locked out? Ok, I'll get the keys to our car and come get you... oh, you have the keys to that car too? Ok, well, um... we'll come get you somehow..."
My ears were keen and I already had my shoes on. "Tell mom I'll come on Devin's bike with the other set of keys!" I told my dad. He hurried outside to see me off.
"I wish I had..." I began to say, then trailed off. He finished for me, "some gloves?"
"No," I said, "I don't remember what I was thinking, but I'll be fine." And off I rode, speeding along, my legs pumping faster than probably ever in my life. 'I'm coming, mother!' the mantra in my mind.
The wind was truly brisk, pushing at my back and it wasn't long before I realized gloves would have been nice. And my phone, too. Ah well, the world lay before me and I knew I could conquer it if I had but a stout heart and a stern determination to be a hero.
Faster and faster I rode, up hills and down, and don't laugh at what we call hills here in Nebraska. I was feeling that burn in my legs but my momma needed me and when she calls, I come pedaling.
I pulled into the parking lot and there she was, and my vision must have gone funny because it looked like she had been sitting inside the car.
I rode around and hopped off my bike, reaching into my pocket to get out the keys and hand them to her. She came around to hug me and said, "So, funny thing is... the door wasn't actually locked. I just, I thought it was, so..."
With a laugh and a whoop I hopped back on my bike, and waving to my mom I rode home again, my fingers numb and my cheeks chilled. Do you have to actually save someone to be a hero?