Just Write ~ The Ninth

November 7, 2011

I let them cut across the grass in front of the house next door, forgetting to worry about whether or not the neighbors will mind. That’s just which way they were going and so I followed, fast-footed and giggly. Like I’m seven.

The earth under the just-starting-to-autumn-crunch grass is bumpy so I was even more awkward and clumsy than my usual. But who cares; I was catching up, carefully and not carefully, with lunging forward and ankles wobbling.

Like life.

We’re home fast and one boy flies through the front door and the other turns to me and does his I beat you home dance– butt shaking, fingers pointing to the sky, singing a song and laughing,

I wiiiin, I wiiiin. And then I can’t stop laughing.

There is always joy at the sight of them, especially after a separation, even one of only one hour. That feeling rises up, of needing them and wanting them. Joy. I remember an episode of Oprah on parenting. That Dr. Robin lady was on and I remember the sock in the gut feeling when she said, When you became a parent, you gave up the right to self destruct. Those words stuck with me and it’s been years now and some other words that I remember from that episode and others were about how it’s so important that when your child enters the room, your eyes should light up.

Mine do. Sometimes I have to remind myself to turn and really look at them and then let it shine out, but it’s always there, and I think they know that.


This is the ninth installment of Just Write, an exercise in free writing your ordinary and extraordinary moments. {Please see the details here.}  I would love to read your freely written words so join me and link up below. You can add the url of your post at any time. Just be sure it’s a link to your Just Write post, not to your main page. There are really no rules, besides Just Write! (Then link back to this post in your post so people know where to go if they’d like to join in.) (Any links not following those two guidelines will be deleted.) 

Also. Please take a moment to visit someone else who has linked up! It’s a really good way to meet new writers and get inspired by the meaning behind their moments. Word?

Thank you!

Psst: One more thing…you can Grab the Button if you’d like. It’s right over there in the sidebar for your code-grabbing convenience.




Erin November 7, 2011 at 10:19 pm

I think they see your shine even when your head is turned and your eyes are closed. Your love for them, the courage you have in giving it all to be their mom, is so palpable.
Erin recently posted..In Wonderland

Liv November 7, 2011 at 11:09 pm

Sometimes, it happens and you don’t even notice, that magic sparkle that you feel when you watch them, beaming with love.
Liv recently posted..one for the memory box

Galit Breen November 7, 2011 at 11:21 pm

Oh my, you. Yes, we all deserve to have someone’s eyes light up when they see us, yes?

Love this, as always.

Galit Breen recently posted..Giving In

Adventures In Babywearing November 7, 2011 at 11:22 pm

Oh this makes me teary. I love this. I want this, too.

Adventures In Babywearing recently posted..To the moon.

Krishann November 8, 2011 at 12:04 am

This touched my heart as so many of your posts do but in a different way. That phrase you quoted was so powerful and the shine for your children so beautiful. I know that feeling and I love that and I know how important it is to fight so that my eyes might always light up just the way they do now. Love love this. Thank you.
Krishann recently posted..{Hers} Dancing to the words

Debbie/Africa's Blog November 8, 2011 at 12:29 am

I just cannot wait to become a mother and have these moments!!! I am so ready and so looking forward to it!!!
Debbie/Africa’s Blog recently posted..Frustrated!!

Lisa @ Heaven Sent November 8, 2011 at 12:41 am

Love this! What a wonderful reminder that although most of the time it comes naturally, sometimes we need to make sure we are intentional. For them. :)
Lisa @ Heaven Sent recently posted..Unwritten

Tricia November 8, 2011 at 6:04 am

So incredibly sweet. I know that feeling – having to remind myself to slow down and to look. The light up reward is always worth it.
Tricia recently posted..Paradox

Kathleen Basi November 8, 2011 at 6:50 am

I love that line about not self-destructing. I was just thinking this morning about how much we do post-kids that we didn’t think was possible: making lunches and serving them when you feel nauseous, for instance. I’m always happy to see my kids, too, when I’ve been away. EVen if it’s at bedtime and all I want is a cheek nuzzle, a kiss and a hug. And I love how they come pounding to the door to see me when I come back!

Barb November 8, 2011 at 6:57 am

our eyes should light up… so true and in this story, the love shines out of you from everywhere. To paraphrase something I’ve heard before, being a parent is awesome – so we should feel awe when we see our children.
Barb recently posted..life’s snapshots

Christine November 8, 2011 at 6:58 am

Every day I feel this. It’s one of the BEST parts of working out of the home. The evening greeting, the happiness in their eyes, the comfort in my heart when I see them.
Christine recently posted..My limit

Suzanne November 8, 2011 at 8:03 am

Thank you for the reminder. I needed it. Your words are beautiful, as always.
Suzanne recently posted..Thankful Day 8: Just Write

Julia November 8, 2011 at 9:36 am

I think I saw that episode of Oprah. Sometimes we get so busy in the day to day stuff that it’s good to be reminded to really look at the ones in your life and let your eyes light up.
Julia recently posted..Skinny Jeans and Perry Como Sweaters: A Fashionably Late Farewell

Elaine November 8, 2011 at 9:51 am

Oh my YES! “There IS always joy at the sight of them”!! I know exactly what you mean and I smiled so fully when I recognized your words in my own mother heart, Heather. :)
Elaine recently posted..Some days…

Kate November 8, 2011 at 10:04 am

That feeling never gets old. Even when your kids do. Even teenagers look that way, still. I love that.

ann November 8, 2011 at 10:35 am

I loved this post. I was right there with you all! I saw that same Oprah episode and I thank you for reminding me of it. I have a fourteen year old now and its hard to light up when I see him (I know that sounds awful but it’s my truth), he breaks my heart every day…sigh. I know I should be above his hurtful words and condescending looks but it’s really, really hard. I keep trying though and I hope he feels my love.

molly November 8, 2011 at 10:51 am

I needed this today too. It was a rough morning getting the boys ready for school today. I was in a terrible mood because Brigs was crying and wouldn’t stop. I don’t know why I can’t remember to just STOP and LOVE him instead of getting frustrated and rushing them away from me. Some days it is easy to light up. Others, not so much.
molly recently posted..no matter what

brooke November 8, 2011 at 10:52 am

sweet words, heather. and I love some Dr. Robin.

Kori November 8, 2011 at 11:30 am

Oh my, that line about self-destructing totally hit me in the gut today. Thank you for that, and for sharing these slices of your life with all of us.
Kori recently posted..Just Write-Waiting

Alexandra November 8, 2011 at 12:26 pm

Your posts always make my eyes fill with tears.

In like half a second.

time, going by so fast.

The extraordinary ordinary.

Please pray that I always recognize it.

Thank you.
Alexandra recently posted..My Weekend Was Not Mine and Now It’s Monday

krista November 8, 2011 at 2:42 pm

oh, it’s so true. and more than not self-destructing. we give up the right to be unhappy. i battle this, the working towards being the best me possible so that their memories are full of happy. it’s a job in and of itself. but so worth it.
thank you for this.
krista recently posted..what bubbles to the surface

suzanne @ pretty swell November 8, 2011 at 3:50 pm

Love, love, love this. Especially the quote from Oprah. Writing that one down.
suzanne @ pretty swell recently posted..Just Write: what’s in my head

Melissa November 8, 2011 at 4:02 pm

I am breathless….this is so much truth and beauty and resonates so deeply and there is so much I want to say but you have said it all.

I love you friend and your words.
Melissa recently posted..Red Marks

Elizabeth November 8, 2011 at 6:09 pm

I just stumbled upon your blog and your Just Write tuesday’s, I think its all great. I joined in. The quote you have from Oprah’s show is really jarring, but also true.
Elizabeth recently posted..Joining In.

Amanda November 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm

Beautiful and amazing. Now I will always remember “When you became a parent, you gave up the right to self destruct” too, and I didn’t even watch the show.

TheKitchenWitch November 8, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Yes. They light up. They light us up. I always think of that Snow Patrol song, “Light up/light up/as if you have a choice/even if you cannot hear my voice/I’ll be right beside you dear…”
TheKitchenWitch recently posted..Veg-Head Monday:Mashed Potato and Kale Cakes

Bridget November 8, 2011 at 10:27 pm

Isn’t mama-love the most amazing thing ever? All of my children continually amaze me and I fall more and more in love with them every day. It’s obvious that you do, too.
Bridget recently posted..Little Boy, Big Heart

Gianna November 8, 2011 at 11:38 pm

I love that quote.
I give up the right to self destruct.
Sometimes, though, everyone needs to have a meltdown or two. You just need to know what to do when that happens? Me, I call my husband or one of my best friends. And they let me say it however it comes out without judging me or telling me what to do.
I am so thankful for those people in my life who help me to love my children even better than before my meltdown!
Gianna recently posted..Sometimes…Late At Night

Amber November 9, 2011 at 6:54 am

Watching siblings interact in a positive way is so thrilling and I really think you captured that wonderfully here.
Amber recently posted..My Snuggle Buddies

Amanda Austin November 9, 2011 at 10:06 am

I’m new here :) But this is just so lovely. I feel the same way after I come home from work and see that little bald headed baby of mine.
Amanda Austin recently posted..Changes

Robin | Farewell, Stranger November 10, 2011 at 10:25 am

Totally awesome, and what a great philosophy. I’ll have to think about that some more, but I love the connection to lit-up eyes.
Robin | Farewell, Stranger recently posted..One Mom’s Perspective

Carrie November 26, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Wow, I LOVE that quote. I am definitely going to hang on to that one.

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