hello mother, hello father

When someone does for you what you can't do yourself, that person is endeared to you forever. Perhaps that's why I love my parents so much; they've ALWAYS done for me what I couldn't do myself. From the get-go, they were all about changing my diapers, cleaning my spit-up, helping me burp, and keeping me from clawing my own eyes out with sharp, baby fingernails.

They helped me survive 3rd grade (yes, 3rd).

My mom did what nobody else could: she stifled her laughter when I sobbed that I felt that my entire life (all 9 years of it), I'd been crossing a river with little stepping stones; but now I was in the middle of the river with no more stones in sight, and my third grade teacher was telling me to jump the rest of the way! My mom kept a straight face the whole time. And I think Mrs. Anderson got a phone call the next day asking what on EARTH she was doing to her poor class.

They helped me survive teenage-hood.

My dad did what nobody else could: he patiently tried to understand my hormone-induced mood changes. Even I couldn't do that. Around 13, I accidentally bent a spoon in the kitchen. My dad said, "Oh, you bent that spoon." And I ran sobbing from the room for no reason that I can divine to this day. He waded through all that wacky emotionality for years until our many late-night ramblings when he advised me on where to go to school and which boys I shouldn't marry, once I finally got around to asking.

So after all this survival, I thought that I'd be pretty self-sufficient by now: no more I-cant-do-it-please-help-me moments. But I had another one just last Saturday. I was in pain and worried that I had done something to ruin my tummy. They hopped in the car and drove down just to say that no, I was not an idiot and I had to learn to be a patient patient.

Anyone could have said that. But they had put in all that time to say and do everything that nobody else could say or do for me. And somehow, that made it matter more than it could have from anyone else.


Deja said...

This is lovely. I love it when parents say the good stuff. Glad they were there.

janel said...

The other day I told Sage about the 10 Virgins, and she cried and cried about the fate of the 5. I think this is preparing me for the teenage years. (Or perhaps she's getting the hormones all out of her system now?) I'm learning both how to stifle my laughter and quell her tears. But sometimes I just get my camera and take a picture to post on my blog instead. Is this bad parenting?

Anna and Stephen said...

I love your parents also. They are wonderful. :)

Lisa Wilson said...

Your Mom is absolutely wonderful. She made an strong impression on me when she was the YW President. Great lady.

David said...

Thanks Kathy. It has always been out pleasure. I wouldn't have missed those talks for the world.