How Great Thou Part

It’s hot in Siesta Key, Florida. The water splashes up against the dock. The kids scurry past us. They jump onto the jet skis.

“Hey,” yells my friend Lucy. “You are everything to me!”

Lucy’s three kids look up and smile at their mom. They are anxious to hit the open seas.

“Hey,” commands Lucy once again. “Did you hear me? Everything!”

There is such love coming from Lucy. It is not lost on me that instead of ranting warnings like most mothers, Lucy chooses to remind her children there is nothing more important than her ‘Three Everything’s.’

The moment gives me pause.

I remember just before I had my first son I was terrified. I couldn’t believe I was going to have this little person that needed me to be the best example I could be in life. When we brought Tommy home from the hospital I couldn’t stop staring at him.

I had alternating thoughts.

Oh my gosh, he is beautiful.

Oh my gosh, he is relying on me for everything.

It wasn’t long before I went from driving gingerly with my precious cargo to belting out songs while he giggled in the backseat. The love transitioned seamlessly into an abandonment of fear. I wondered what I found beautiful or funny before Tommy arrived.

When we moved Tommy to his big boy bed he would strut his smiling, toddler self into my room in the morning.

“Wake up mommy! It’s a beautiful day outside!”

I remember going away one weekend and our babysitter calling me.

“Colleen,” she said. “Tommy walked into my room this morning announcing it was a beautiful day and it was time to get up.”

“I know,” I chuckled. “When Tommy was a baby I didn’t realize that each morning that was what I would say to him. That is until he started parroting it back to me.”

Today my Tommy turns 21 years old. He is away at college in Athens, Georgia – more specifically he’s on a cruise ship with 2,000 other college students (no parental worries there).

Only I wish he was here with me.

I wish I could burst into his room and say, “Wake up Tommy! It’s a beautiful day outside! —

Every day has been beautiful since you arrived and became one of my ‘Three Everything’s'”


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