I will always see her as my little girl. The sweet smile looking up at me with chubby cheeks and curiosity in her eyes. Just as if she was 5 years old again, I can feel the grip she has on my hand as she held to make sure I was always near. I can feel that strong grip around my neck hugging me so tight I could barely breathe. I would never in that moment tell her she was choking me because she was a sweet little girl loving on her most favorite committed person. Her mom.
Today my daughter flew back to school after a very short spring break visit home. When we said goodbye, I felt that 5 year old love and hug all over again. It came racing back. I fought back tears but they nestled in my eyes without rolling down my face where it would send everyone in departures into that “oh goodbyes are so hard and a sad moment”. Goodbye and hello are moments of connection woven into our love language.
The look in a persons eyes we are connected to when greeting or departing speaks a million languages of it’s own. Some extreme happiness, sadness, frustration, fear and relief. Either way, I hope to continue encouraging my daughter to speak all of the things that meet her heart in those moments.
She is now 5’11, and I, 5’6, but I am still her strength. Although he towers over me, she still sees me as the person to protect her in any situation. Her momma who she’ll hug so tight not realizing her strength, but because it feels like the safest place on earth. So we hugged and held on for just a few minutes longer.
We may drive each other crazy at times but we love each other so fearlessly. We would be abnormal if we agreed on everything or never got on each others nerves. I will never believe there is a mother daughter duo on this planet that sees each other with rose colored lenses. We are imperfect and that is what strengthens us more as we grow older together.
In fact I started writing her a letter this morning in regards to some things I observed while she was home this past week. As a mom I wanted to provide a teachable moment for her and send this letter to her after she was back at school. To give her time to process. I was not happy with some of the decisions she made and although I realize they were minor, she still needed to know. Because, how do we learn if we are not told or open to listening. Minor or not. Even through some of my most frustrating moments as a mom, I will always love her and see her as my little girl with the purest heart. The one who hugs with a grip so tightly because they embody what love should look and feel like.