I sat curled up in the recliner in our living room. The baby had already gone to bed, so my oldest son sat at the kitchen counter and my son was stretched out on the sofa.
I can’t remember what was on the television. I wasn’t watching it anyway. I was too busy watching them and trying to decide what I was going to say that would stick with them and that one day when they were faced with a situation where they had to choose between a serious right or wrong they would hear my voice.
I mean, that’s what all parents hope for – right?
As the words formed on my tongue I prayed that it would matter, “I need you to know that no matter what you face in life, no matter how hurt you are, no matter how mad you think I will be. I need you to know that whatever feeling you may have, you can always talk to me. I will listen. But more importantly, I need you to know that no matter what – I love you.”
And so they grinned and looked at me. While chewing on his fingernails, my oldest son said, “We know mommy.”
And with hand motions flailing like mine when I talk, my middle son replied, “And you need to remember, we love you, too, mommy.”
That was it. They were right. There was nothing left to be said other than the words that had been exchanged. All that matters now is that we never forget.