Today I will follow behind that beautiful white truck with my first born behind the wheel and my husband in the passenger seat as we make our way to his new
18 years ago I had a newborn and we had been up all night, his daddy was at work and I had finally got this beautiful boy to fall asleep. When he did I was overcome with how scared I was for him to grow up knowing without really knowing how quickly the years were gonna go. As a brand new exhausted mama at the tender age of 24 my soul knew KNEW what I was in for and I wrote this beautiful sleeping boy a love letter then...and I'm sharing it with y'all now. Because I know KNOW that I'm not the only momma that is smiling while setting up a new dorm while my whole entire heart mourns for the 18 years that just absolutely flew by the blink of an eye!
YOU WALK AWAY
It feels like yesterday when you were in the warm confines of my body. I felt your hiccups, kicks, punches and somersaults. You climbed your way into the world and entered the warm embrace of my arms. I touch you, cuddle and kiss you. I nurse you and then they take you away, off to the nursery to be checked out. It is the first time in 9 months to be away from you. I feel empty as I watch them walk away.
You decide four months later that you want to hold a bottle, not be restricted in my arms while I nurse you. I watch your father carry you and your bottle off to bed as y’all walk away.
Your too attached to me they say. Is there such a thing? I put you in preschool, they have to peel your arms off of my body when I drop you off and you run to me when I pick you up, at first. But you like your teacher and you have new friends, as we enter the classroom I watch you run away.
Kindergarten, your eyes plead to be a baby again and climb up in my arms, but your pride makes you be strong. Tentatively you step into the large school. You see a friend and start to chat. I watch you walk away.
The truck is washed; you look so handsome in your tux. You growl when I take your picture and beg off my kiss. As you leave, to pick up your prom date, I watch you drive away.
You got a football scholarship; you are so excited, good dorm, great friends and lots of parties and girls, in your future. You don’t want your mom to help you move in. You struggle under the weight of the boxes and I watch you stagger away.
“She looks beautiful, wait until you see her” I say. “I hope you will be happy and all your dreams come true. Don’t make me wait too long for grandbabies,” I say. The pastor pronounces you husband and wife. Through eyes overflowing with tears, I watch you walk down the aisle to your new life and the woman in it, giving her the hugs and kisses that used to be mine. You both run through the shower of birdseed to the truck and at the end you stop and turn around. I watch you walk towards me. “I love you mom” you say, “I’ll call you when we get back”. My heart is full as I watch you walk away.
©Kimberly Kempken 1997