The other day you were crying, and I ran to you and held you in my arms. And this strange happiness flooded my whole body. It was because you were crying. And I was holding you. And I was exactly where I wanted to be. And I realized how far we’d come, you and I.
When you first came home, sweet Beniam, you cried a lot… at night, especially. Crying babies had always made me feel powerless. What should I do? I would try to feed or rock or change you, but sometimes the crying persisted regardless of what I did. We rocked in that old rocking chair endless hours, you and I… and I wondered if you would ever sleep through the night. Or if I would ever have what it took to comfort you just right.
Slowly, and I do mean slowly, you began to cry less and sleep more. And I was grateful for the sleep. And I was happy that you were content and more peaceful.
Then there was this day. It had been some time since our wild nights. You had had a minor toddler-type-accident. I forget now what it was. And you were there crying and calling out, “Mooommmmy!” And I scooped you up. And that flood of happiness. What was that?
I was holding you close to me and I was actually glad that you were crying. ( Oh, and by the way, when you cry- you cry really loud.) But I didn’t care. I just sat there and held you, and thought this:
It was here that I became your mother. Not a ‘mother’ on a paper, signed by some court.
But your mommy. The one you would call for when you fell.
It wasn’t earned, but it was lived… just lived out night after night.
Through the tears (yours and mine) and the snot and the rocking back and forth of that chair.
There I became your mommy and you became my son.
So, my Beniam, if you notice a huge smile creep across my face next time you skin your knee and call out for me, please don’t be alarmed. I’m just really, really happy to be your mom.
- (This incident actually occurred about a year ago, but I was inspired to write about it tonight after listening to this song. Definitely worth a listen…)