Many years ago when my now 21 year old college student son was 4 or 5, he questioned some parental ruling I made. Half in jest and half in exasperation I mentioned that there was a special Mothers' Rule Book located somewhere high in the Himalayan Mountains to which ONLY moms were privvy. He eyed me curiously and suspiciously but seemed to accept the complex mom fib.
Later on it became a joke between us and sort of a sweet tradition, to banter the questionable reality of such an amazing manuscript.
Not too long afterwards he would retort ( with great glee I might add), that there was a KIDS" Rule Book located at some remote location to which adults were equally barred.
I had to smile.
I had been bested by my son.
Figures given the complexity of the little white lie I told my five year old...
Flash to the future and his teenagehood which was not without angst and all
that puberty brings...
Around that time I elected to absolve him from the usual materialistic ( and expensive) practice of giving me things for birthdays or holidays. It was a lovely gift to me and a way of saving face for him.
I asked simply that he compose something related to our relationship that didn't have to be perfect but was required to come straight from the heart.
Over the years since then, some submissions have been silly, some goofy, some remarkably poignant, most mispelled and every single one, treasured.
A phone call placed to him just before Mothers' Day regarding his tardy "gift" was met with "My computer isn't working right and my roomie has already left for the weekend." "I have a couple of papers to write but I PROMISE to send something to you mom, honest."
I wasn't surprised that I looked for it often.
I wasn't surprised that I was a bit put out when it didn't arrive for Mothers' Day.
Until yesterday, that is, when the eagerly anticipated literary gift arrived...
The entry arrived simply as follows:
Scientists confirmed today the discovery of an ancient tome of knowledge at the summit of a high peak in the remote Himalayas. Initial reports indicate it is a "Mothers' Rule Book" of some sort. Details are sketchy but apparently these are the first 10 rules. Details of a "Childrens' Rule Book" have yet to be confirmed....
1. Be your childs' friend, but also impart responsibility.
2. One can NEVER give or receive enough hugs.
3. Encourage your children to take risks, but always be behind them ready to catch them if they fall.
4. Popsicles can generally cure any form of backyard injury.
5. If your child makes a dumb decision, hug them first, discipline second.
6. Take your children out for daughter/son days. They grow up way too fast to be at school all the time.
7.Orange juice will never be surpassed for its' healing qualities by modern medicine, with regard to the sniffles.
8. Sometimes it's better to let them get knocked around by life early in a safe way. It sure doesn't pull any punches later.
9. Always say be careful...It's your right to worry, even when they get older.
10. As a Yet-to-be born famous sage and poet will say, All you need is love; love is all you need.
Scientists (me) expect to release more rules on special days of the year, perhaps on certain sibling children's birthdays and the like. Scientists are mysterious that way...
I love you mom...Thanks for backing me up in everything I do...
Written for my mom , by her son, Christopher Daniel Crowninshield
Mothers' Day 2004..
Through my tears and over the wall of great pride I can't help but feel I have to think that maybe I didn't do such a bad job after all..
HAPPY BELATED MOTHERS' DAY !