My newly minted 3-year-old is in this funny stage where he loves Mommy so much, he occasionally wants to squeeze me to death.
I equate it to that thing with babies, where they somehow seem so adorable and impossibly sweet that you just want to (delicately, gently) bite them. I’m not completely nuts—there’s even been a study about that weird phenomenon. Really.
Anyway, with my son, that Mommy love translates into him saying, “I’m going to eat you!” and then attempting to gnaw on a random body part with a big, devilish smile on his face. Or tickling me so intensely that those tickles might be confused with a Vulcan death grip. Or tousling my hair to the point where I’m being suffocated by it and then strangled. Or exclaiming, “I’m going to tackle you!” and then pouncing on me.
That last one was last night’s version of the extreme love. And it was beyond delicious. He tackled me on the couch, toppling me over and giggling in complete toddler delight. Again and again and again. The more I laughed, the more he laughed. The more he laughed, the more I laughed. It was one of those perfect motherhood moments.
It was even more perfect because I somehow avoided a knee to the stomach and an elbow to the eye. Not an easy feat, as we all know.
I thank my lucky stars that I have these moments every day. Not to this ecstatic degree maybe, but they’re still there, and God, do I appreciate every single one of them.
Yes, I’m tired. All. The. Time.
Yes, I have a laundry-filled hamper that’s eerily similar to Hermione’s magically bottomless bag.
Yes, I was apparently the worst mother of the year earlier this week because I served my son a peanut butter and jelly sandwich instead of a cream cheese and jelly one (which, mind you, he didn’t ask for).
Yes, I regularly look like something my dog stepped in after a “Mommy, I have to go potty” wake-up at an ungodly hour of the morning.
Yes, the bathroom was covered in pee last week because he wanted to go to the potty by himself and couldn’t get his pants over his feet in time.
Yes, I am dying to read the last three Stephen King novels that are laying untouched on my nightstand because I keep passing out as soon as my head hits the pillow.
Yes, I think often about that elusive life balance that I don’t seem to have any hope of ever attaining.
Yes, I have a million things that I want to do, not to mention all the things I need to do—for work, the house and my sanity—and about 26 minutes in which to do them all on a daily basis.
But those everyday moments with my son. Those wonderfully perfect everyday moments…
Sometimes I wonder if my greatest gift in life—from God or the universe or the luck of the genetic draw—is perspective. Because as mired in the rest of my life as I can get and as frustrating as it can be upon occasion, there is not one minute of the day that I don’t know that because of my son, I have an awesome life.
And I am so completely, utterly and overwhelmingly grateful for it.