My best friend Ashley and I were sitting on the floor, casually chatting about everything from The Bachelor to mommy life, when I suddenly leaped into action. One minute I was just sitting there, legs crossed. The next moment, I was flying through the air, redirecting my son’s chubby hand from a glass of water that was sitting just a tad bit too close to the edge of the table.
Shattered glass averted!
Then I calmly settled back down again, never missing a beat in our conversation.
Ashley watched me with slightly widened eyes before commenting, “I never really realized just how quick your reflexes have to be when you’re the mom of a toddler.”
I paused a moment to think back to how quickly I had sprung from a sitting position to a full-blown lunge across the room. Oh my gosh, she’s right. I have super-human strength and agility! Someone sign me up for America Ninja Warrior… Someone film me teaching a workout DVD with Jillian Michaels… Someone sew me a Superwoman cape (but just make sure it matches my new leggings from Lalaroe).
But here’s the crazy thing. I’ve tried yoga once in my life, and I managed to less-than-gracefully fall over onto my face while simultaneously bruising my kneecaps. (Apparently you aren’t supposed to attempt a balance-on-your-hands style pose on your first attempt, but – I digress – I’m all about aiming big). I’d rather eat kale than do squats. I’d rather eat a cheeseburger than eat kale. And the closest I get to doing Parkour is jumping into my Jeep while juggling groceries.
(Okay, you’re right, let’s scratch that teaching a workout DVD with Jillian Michael’s idea).
I’m not going to appear on a fitness or extreme adventurer magazine anytime soon. (Or how about never…). But when Brady was in danger of being injured? My body sprung into action with an agility that I normally wouldn’t possess And because of this, to Brady, I am a super-hero. And strong. And an ever-brave explorer to help guide him through this exciting, sometimes -confusing adventure of life.
My job, as the leader, is to jump into action, should Brady need protection. (And when you’re raising an energetic little boy like Brady, you are constantly leaping into action, trust me). 😉 But as time passes, I also need to help equip him with skills to forge his own trails. I need to help him find courage to venture out on his own, while making sure he knows that his mamma will always be waiting with homemade cookies to welcome him home.
Silly, right? That one little leap during a toddler playdate could remind me of how incredible I am as a woman? But the thing is, I so often doubt myself… And sometimes I need that reminder.
There is no meter to gauge just how fierce, unending, and strong a mother’s love for her child is. And even though that love will never put us on television or in the pages of a book, to our children, we are guides. Protectors. And warmth.
We don’t need all the answers – or to have it all together – in order to be super-mom. We just need to love unconditionally and selflessly. Everything else just kind of falls into place after that…
We will always have mom-like reflexes to hold our children close when the world tries to hurt them… but yet we posses the strength to gently push them away when they need to learn to stand on their own two feet again.
And THAT is enough. America Ninja Warrior can keep its prize. 🙂