I will always remember these moments

Last week, while the thunderstorms raged and the lightning flashed, my oldest boy couldn’t sleep.   He was petrified, his little hands over his ears and body totally still, wishing the thunder away from our house.  Both boys whimpered a little, tossing and turning, but when Bear went back to sleep, Widget remained vigilent and worried, terrified of the mayhem that was going on outside.

I stayed to comfort them, of course, and began to talk our way through it.

I started by explaining what we saw.  I told him a story, in bedtime fashion, about what causes thunder (lightning), what causes lightning (charged particles bumping too close together), and what charges up the particles (hang in for one more minute here).  We talked about how everything in the world is made up of these little bits (particles) and how the particles could have a charge, like a shock, and when so many of them got together and were moving around really really fast they build up energy just like when brothers run around really really fast down the hall like fire trucks (or a city bus, apparently, if you ask Bear these days).  And then one of them runs a little too hard, and they bump together, and bam! the energy has to go somewhere, so it falls down to earth like lightning.

The talking calmed him down, but the light and noise were still raging outside his window, showing no signs of abating.  A visit from Daddy brought more stories of how lightning happens (static electricity on a slide, anyone? he is awesome, I know), but it wasn’t quite enough either.  So the three of us turned it into a game.  After a particularly bright flash, I marveled at its brightness.  Then, Daddy did.  To be silly, after another, I clapped my hands and said a very quiet, “Bravo!”  Soon, a little voice was joining me, and little hands clapped above the covers after each flash.  We watched the next stage of the lightning storm as if it were a beautiful light show, oohing and aahing and celebrating the beauty instead of fearing the consequences.

And then, just before he fell asleep, Widget turned to Mama and said, in his sleepy little four year old voice, “I will always remember these moments.”

Hmmmm.  I may have said that around the house, once or twice.  You see, since my diagnosis on June 16, 2007, I’ve taken extra note of each magical moment, written it down when I could, or just shared it with my loved ones with a smile.  I know that no matter what comes my way, I am sure that I have lived.

So if I whisper to the boys late at night that I love them, and that I will always love them, or if I hug them a little too tight, or if I am a tad too willing to choose fun over laundry, there’s a reason behind it all.  I want these boys to know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, two things: 1. Mama loves her boys more than anything in the world, and 2. Mama lived each day, with kindness and with no regrets.

There’s more that I want to do, sure, but that’s enough.

I will always remember these moments.

23 Responses to I will always remember these moments

  1. upsidebackwards says:

    You take my breath away. You are an awesome mother.

  2. Lisa says:

    That was wonderful! Glad you are home again! Can’t wait to play!

  3. Amy says:

    Does this mean your test results came back ok? I’ve worried about you.

    • whymommy says:

      Nothing positive, Amy, which means it was just a virus that socked me hard. Ridiculous, really, but my body just wasn’t strong enough to fight it off. Thanks, and I’m sorry to worry you ….

  4. amandalinn says:

    That is So. Cool.

  5. Kat says:

    Wow! What a beautifully written post! Amazing, just amazing! It gave me sweet chills.

    I hope you’re feeling better.


  6. NYfriend says:

    *choked up* *sniff*
    You’re such a great mom. Your story of how you comforted your sons is so sweet. (and you know that I just *loved* the physics explanations!!)

    We all should live by those “two things” that our kids should know without a doubt. 🙂 Your blog really helps me to keep on track with that, best I can. 🙂

  7. NoRegrets says:

    Nice. Interesting what they learn.

  8. Laurie says:

    That is so perfect! Besides simply picking up on a phrase you use, it’s nice to see that your little one truly seems to get the reason you use it, the depth and importance those words have. How awesome and glad you could be there for that not still sick in the hospital!

  9. Karen says:

    First, what a great way both you and your husband have, in both comforting AND educating your children – at the same time! I wonder whether they will pursue careers in science. (Way too soon to know…however you are certainly giving them a foundation for when they decide their career path.)
    My neighborhood has had unusually strong storms the past several days, complete with white-out lightning. It seems earlier in the season than normal, to have such strong storms. I’m thinking, and hoping not, global warming : (
    And, in your situation I might have started singing ‘Raindrops on roses’… but your approach sounds much better! : )

  10. Karen says:

    Oh, and sorry for the lengthy comment… I am not known for being concise.

  11. Karen says:

    Also – a bit stressed after being including in a big lay-off at big blue, so I started to comment on 2 blogs. I’ll stop that now – I DO realize that blogs aren’t actual people. Nor were the people I worked with at my last employer – just a lot of voices on the phone or texts on the IM system. My lot in life I guess – never meet anyone in real life, kill myself if / when I get up to it.

    • whymommy says:

      Maybe you’ve never been here before, Karen, but I received a terrible prognosis almost two years ago this week. Cancer. Late stage cancer, with 90% chance of recurrence within 5 years, and only a 40% chance of survival before that. I’ve spent every bit of me that I have to overcome it and live just a few more days. Trust me when I say that once you stare death in the face living never looked so good.

      I can’t help you through this — I’m not strong enough — but I hope that you find someone who can. I would give anything to be healthy like you, with a life stretching out before me.

  12. Karen says:

    pls delete all comments with my e-mail, thanks. You don’t need the drama. Kill me : )

    • whymommy says:

      You’re right I don’t need the drama. But you need someone to talk to. Please call 1-800-SUICIDE today. A twitter friend suggests it — or hopeline.com. Please call, so I don’t have to worry about you tonight.

      • k says:

        so so sorry. First, that is a great recommendation. i have a doctor and it didn’t occur to me that you would worry about a stranger on the internet. (a bit dense, her.)
        With that, thank you for your concern and pls don’t worry any more. From just a brief ‘visit’ to your blog, I see that you have so much in your life – you and your family are very blessed despite the serious health challenges that you (and I – didn’t mention that) face. Thanks again for your concern. I won’t comment again (and that isn’t to be weird…just to not cause undue concern.)
        Thanks again to you and your friends.

  13. Kathy U says:


  14. Bon says:

    i’m so glad you’re home. and yeh…there’s not much more important than them knowing that you live each day with gratitude and your best face forward, and that you love them.

    are you feeling better? is everything okay?

  15. whymommy says:

    So far so good. I’m about to leave the house for the first time in 2 weeks … playdate, here we come!

  16. Awesome post. I have a similar reaction with my youngest, who at one point was not expected to survive. Every thing she does amazes me. And it made me realize, every thing the other kids do is amazing too. I drink it up. We are lucky have each moment together.

  17. laurie says:

    Me too. So beautiful. And such wise, sweet kids.

  18. JoC says:

    Beautiful!!!!! Thank you for telling us about it.

  19. Kirstin says:

    Reading your blog always reminds me to slow down to remember and appreciate the special moments with our kids. Thank you. (Glad to hear that you are feeling better too!)

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