Tuesday, February 3, 2015

A lesson learned...through his eyes

My 6-year-old keeps a photo of me in a frame on his shelf above his bed.  It's a ceramic frame he and his friends painted, decorated, and put their names on for his 5th birthday party at one of those paint-your-own-pottery places.  The photo of me is from 1994, my senior year of high school.

Tonight at bedtime, we were doing our nightly routine of "Day Talk" (where we tell each other, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute, about our days) and Alex said something about how he loves that photo.  I asked him if he even knew who it was and he said, without hesitation, "It's you, Mommy".

Now, I look at that photo and I don't see me.  I see a 17-year-old version of who I used to be.  I see a young, thin, pretty girl, with the whole world in front of her.  She had adventures to go on, wild animals to tame, and dreams to conquer.  A far cry from the frumpy, old, haggard version of me before him.

But here was my sweet, innocent, 6-year-old saying, without skipping a beat, "It's you, Mommy!"

I jokingly responded, "How do you know that's me?!?"

"Because I see your same eyes."

"The same smile"

"The same hair"

"The same teeth"

"The same..."

He looked at this picture of me from 20+ years ago and he saw me just as he sees me now.  He didn't see the absence of wrinkles then vs. today's dull, lack luster skin.  Instead he looks past my greying hair and the no-longer-straight and certainly no-longer sparkling white teeth I once sported in my youth.  It didn't even phase him that the girl in that picture is easily 100 lbs lighter.  That she saw hope and promise in a world she has since become skeptical of.  He simply saw ME.  He saw his Mom.  He sees the same person NOW that I was back then.  And in that moment...so did I.  Now to practice holding on to that...

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