Feb 5, 2013

Wrinkled Toes: A Memoir-ish

Last week, I was prompted to write a short memoir for class.  Well, really it was a moment'oir because the word count was so short, but the idea was to capture a turning point or important moment in 300 words or less.  I thought about writing about my wedding day or the moment one of my kids was born or even the moment I found out I was pregnant...but honestly, those weren't really turning points for me.  They were important moments, but I did not change in them.  The real turning points for me are the little everyday moments with my kids when I realize that A- I am a mother.  You would think that realization would get old after a while, but still 7 years in and sometimes I go "WHOA. I'm someone's Mom."  and B- My kids are only kids for a short time.
It was during Jude's bath time that I was inspired to write this.




This is the sweetest moment of my day: the moment near the end where I get to scrub oatmeal scented bubbles on tiny, wrinkled toes. I sit in the quiet of the bright bathroom and watch him play with toy fish and tiny cups. I am amazed as he carefully tips cups full of water into emptier cups, and my mind instantly recalls the chirping newborn that appeared, bright red and screaming, just two short years ago. In my memory, I have safely stored away the smell and feel of his tiny weight in my arms, knowing full well that his size and smell were as temporary as the dirt between his toes. Each day, he learns and changes, taking fragments of the world that I offer him like candy from my hand. He will collect endless nuggets of knowledge and each piece will change him so that the boy that I bathe tonight is a little bit different than the boy that I bathed yesterday but not yet the boy I will bathe tomorrow.
And so on, it will continue until this toddler will become the boy, who will become the man who will be too old for wrinkled toes and bubble baths. And still here, I will sit, recalling unchanging memories of a baby who still fits in my arms. But these days move too quickly for me to mourn them. I don't waste them with tears and regret. Instead, I wash another blessed day off those wrinkled toes. I lay my sweet-smelling, clean boy in bed, ready and prepped for another day that will pass too quickly. We read stories, sing songs, share giggles and kisses. Tomorrow, he may no longer be a toddler, but my memory of him exactly this way will last forever.
   


For the record, my grade on this was decent, but not fantastic.  According to my professor, it's more of a personal essay and less of a memoir.  I guess she doesn't know I'm a blogger.


13 comments:

Jen said...

Awww I love this. :) I hope you are having a wonderful day.

Chantal said...

I love it too! I get hit with that "holy moly this child is MY kid" moments all the time. Seriously, when did I have a baby?

Stephany said...

This may be more personal essay than memoir (at least in your professor's eyes), but it is a beautiful piece of writing. I hope you continue to share as you go along in this journey!

ohseems said...

That was lovely =) write on!

Nikki said...

Creative Non-fiction is a really hard area to write in, especially short flash pieces like this. If you want a good resource, check http://brevitymag.com. It's all about 'concise non-fiction' as they say. I like this though. Keep writing and I hope you do join my link-up; I love reading new stuff!

Brighton Harper said...

No matter at you professor said it was a beautiful piece of writing. I hope you'll share more in the future.

Fran said...

dude, this is beautiful <3

Saxon @ Lets Drink Coffee, Darling said...

This is very beautiful! What a sweet way you will remember your little guy one day. :) And professors are just plain silly. Thanks for stopping by and following my blog, I'm a new follower of yours!

melissa said...

Um well I teared up, so not too sure what your teacher was going on about. It's so short, I can't really say how else she would expect you to write about a moment in your life! If you were writing the book of your life, this could have easily come from it. I don't know... Maybe this is why I'm not a teacher? I think you did fantastic <3

kacie @ mama case said...

i love this. the little moments are the ones that really hit me too.

new follower from hop!
www.mamacase.com

Ashley @ ThisUnscriptedLife said...

This was beautiful! Poo on your professor for not giving you an excellent grade! I loved it and I give you an A+++ =)

Megan C. Stroup said...

This is beautiful! I read it on my phone a long time ago but I kept it unread so I could comment on it and let you know what a wonderful writer you are. I can't wait to read your book one day. :)

bookrockbetty.com said...

stop it! maybe you aren't mourning... but holy crap i'm sitting here crying like a baby thinking about the baby bettys. they grow way too fast and it breaks my heart!! haha i love every phase as they continue to learn new things and express themselves differently... the bigger they get the more of who they are starts to shine through, but I do miss the baby days. if only we could hit the pause button....

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