The mom lingers over the last few pages of her book, not wanting the enjoyable read to come to an end. She feels so grateful for the opportunity to shift from her typical autopilot mental state and the mundane busyness of her life, to a place of laughter and thought and reflection. Of course, all good things must come to an end – and there are a lot of great un-opened books waiting on her nightstand.
You want to know the truth about endings and beginnings? I think you can handle it.
The end of 2016 found me limping across the finish line, as is my usual December tradition, with the frenzy of the holidays colliding with a few unforeseen complications. I hit someone’s car in a restaurant parking lot en route to a holiday luncheon and spent every subsequent conversation there trying to determine what kind of car folks drove, ready with deeply remorseful apologies and my already-strained checkbook if they were the unlucky owner of a badly scraped blue Acura. What a fun party game that was!
The next week while on my way to pick up my youngest at a birthday party I was felled by a horrendous stomach bug that came out of nowhere during the five minute drive from my house. I screeched over to the side of the road to fling my car door open and myself out, and barely made it before becoming completely incapacitated by retching. While I flailed at the curb a carpool line of moms picking up their party-goers passed by with looks of absolute horror on their faces, as they realized my germy kid had just spent the afternoon with their babes – a mere four days out from Christmas.
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Thankfully, all of that drama was relatively short-lived. Once the dust settled and the family came Christmas was pretty great, like it ultimately always is. Luckily, no one else came down with the dreadful puking plague. Or hit any other cars (which is saying something, since my oldest started Driver’s Ed over the break).
And then, it was a new year.
There are a lot of changes on the 2017 horizon. We are inaugurating a new president in a deeply divided country. For those who struggle to celebrate the pomp and circumstance this time around perhaps joy may be found in traditions that reflect the enduring awesomeness of our democracy. Regardless of where you fall on the political spectrum it’s likely that you’re thinking we have a lot of work to do here in America, and that is not a bad thing. As we roll up our shirtsleeves I am reminded that any experience that makes you aware of, and recommitted to, all that is truly important in your life is a gift.
Speaking of gifts, the opportunity to write A Few Good Moms has been a tremendous one for me. Thank you for helping me work through so many less-than-stellar mom moments regarding everything from toddler temper tantrums to the unfortunate state of my minivan. And speaking of changes, there are some in the works for MomsCharlotte, including this blog. As I write this last post I am so thankful to know that we are never really alone in these sometimes tender, sometimes tumultuous parenting experiences. And even when we are reluctant to turn the last page of our favorite stories, we know life is full of exciting new chapters just waiting to be written; the truth is, nothing prepares you better for that bittersweet fact than being a mom.
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Bess lives in Charlotte with her husband and two sons. You can read more of her writing at www.maemucho.com.