Buried Treasure

photo 7

I stood over the kitchen sink
scrubbing chars off cookie sheets,
tears dropping like bombs
into Palmolive bubbles.

Could I leave my babies,
three and twenty months,
for five whole days?
One hundred twenty breathless hours?

NO.
I am their Mommy.
They need
ME.

But there, in purple rubber gloves
the Lord met me, saying
“Tucking them in each night — Good.
Loving their Daddy well — BEST.”

So I packed a bag,
took his hand
and flew where
apron strings can’t reach.

But not before I tucked
into my mother-in-law’s hand
their schedule, favorite foods,
medical guardian forms.

These gems, however,
I purposely did not leave her:

That His peanut butter sandwiches
get folded, not cut. That his first bite
will be in the middle of the crease
and he will leave behind a crust “smile.”

That She will hand up her army of stuffed animals,
one by one, for kisses and cradling
before she allows you to
pull her from her crib.

That certain songs will cause Him
to run to retrieve his “dancing shoes,”
which he will struggle to pull on in time
to dance across the living room carpet.

That She will yank out
any hair clips or elastics
not placed in specific Bermuda Triangle
quadrants of her head.

That His left leg will be
touching the floor mid-nap
and should be pushed back up
or he will fall out of bed, waking early.

That She will raise her palms
to the sky and join in singing
“Bless the Lord, Oh My Soul”
at the side of her crib each bedtime.

Instead, I tucked these things
deep in my heart
as buried treasure,
my precious, priceless Mama Gold.

I know my mother-in-law
would understand.
She is a mother,
after all.

And this week, as she sifts and pans their lives
I know she will discover gems of her own,
hold some up to the light
to sparkle free.

But most, I suspect, she’ll tuck
deep in her heart
as buried treasure,
her precious, priceless Grandma Gold.

Photo Credit

*This is my first time joining the Imperfect Prose writing group hosted by Emily Wierenga. Please click the button below to read others’ beautiful writing inspired by this week’s prompt, “Mother.”

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15 thoughts on “Buried Treasure

  1. We grandmas cannot replace you mommas, but our love is strong and we treasure the moments we get to share with our grandkids. How wonderful for your children that they have so many adults who love them!

  2. This is simply glorious. Oh the smallest details of their lives that we as moms treasure up and store up and have memorized in our memory keepers. What a beautiful write. I will look for you next week at Em’s. So glad you came over. Its a wonderful community. …elizabeth

  3. Thank you, dear one! You touched many hearts with your words and I think most of all, your mother-in-law! Glad to see you linking-up for the first time at Emily’s!
    Much love XX
    Mia

    • Mia, I’ve been reading the group at Emily’s for awhile now and am so excited to join! Thank you for your encouragement! Yes, I have such a wonderful mother-in-law; hope she knows how much I appreciate her!

    • Thank you, Kris… I hope you see this reply… For me, reading your blog is like curling up with a favorite literary magazine. You have such a unique point of view. xoxo back. 🙂

  4. this is beautiful. i am a momma of two, one more coming. i left the first one for 365 days in 2008-2009. brutal. the gems kept me going. but ohh it was hard to give up {to my sister} the gifts of those days. {Found you on the The Story Circle FB page.}

    • Thank you for coming by, Molly! Wow, I can’t fathom 365 days…Yes, you gave your sister a GIFT and a bond with your little one that will add so much extra auntie love to his or her life! I’m looking forward to getting to know you and your wonderful writing more through The Story Circle. 🙂

  5. I left my son with my mom for two weeks when he was 4 and with my husband’s mom for one week when he was 6 so I could go on missions trips. The hardest three weeks of my life! but the treasure in my heart helped a great deal. Thank you for your beautiful words.

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