A Chat with Grammy in the Sky

I’m on an airplane headed back home to Austin, back to my waiting husband and kids.  I’ve been in Michigan at my grandmother, Harriet Decker’s memorial service. She lived a long life, mother to five children.   As soon as I step through my front door I will be needed again.  And it won’t be a pastel, casual need.  It will big need, loud like tie-dye.  So I’m savoring the silence and a cup of coffee in the clouds. I’m listening for Grammy’s voice as I study some photographs of her.
If I listen close I can hear her encouraging me as a mother.
You can be patient, Jessie.  You can do this mothering.  It is a calling.  Even if you don’t feel it every day, it’s there.  The calling is in your arms because she scraped a knee. It’s a boy who needs correction with love. Rest on the couch with a hand on your forehead if you need to. Utter praises. See what scripture you can call to mind.  Try it. 
You can mother them with a rhythm, Jessie. You fear you can’t, but you can.  See a metronome in your mind.  Follow a beat.  Hum a rousing tune.  Don’t retreat to worry.  Don’t let yourself get grumpy. Clip some flowers; they’ll make you feel good.  Draft a poem when you hold the baby on your hips.  Read a recipe while they play.  Don’t demand every margin of time be yours.  Stop grabbing at freedom like you’re starving. You aren’t starving; you are simply a mother.  Find small moments in the day. Savor them like fine desserts.  The discipline of choosing joy is real. I know. I had five children.  Lean into the hard days not away from them. IMG_2582
The plane is touching down now.  The wheels bump along in that way they do.  I take one more long look at her pictures.
And remember what my mother (your great-grandmother) used to say, ‘The best things in life are something to look forward to, a memory to cherish, and someone who needs you.'”