My son is my hero. Truly, he is. On Valentine’s Day I gave him a card that I made for him. He seemed surprised at what it said on the front. Around the heart I had written, You stole my heart the day you were born. Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband very, very much. He is the man, the husband, the partner I always dreamed of and prayed for. The one that would fulfill on earth what many did not think was possible. But that is another story for another day.
The day my daughter was born more than 25 years ago, she wrapped her little fingers around my hand and my heart. She was and will always be my first treasure. Her papa always called her Beansy (accept for that time period that he called her, rightfully so, Bossy Cow). She was our little beansy. Born weighing in at only 5 lbs and 10 ounces, she was small from the get go. And yet, her body, mind, and determination were strong. My little girl has grown up to be an amazingly strong woman who is and will do great things in this world for so many people.
With a daughter like that and a husband like Tom, the only thing my heart could want was a little boy. One with red hair, a few curls and fire that goes along with the hair would be icing on the cake. When Tom and I decided to ‘try’ to have a baby we had no idea if we could. For one Tom was nearly 45 years old and had never fathered a child. I, at 34 years old, although I had carried and birthed a child it had been over 15 years. In many cases with a gap that large a woman’s body decides it is no longer going to carry children. Imagine my joy when we found out I was pregnant, then when we found out it was going to be a boy, and then when he came out with red curly hair! My cup runneth over. His red hair and fiery personality are equally wonderful and at times frustrating. And yet, I find myself smiling more often than I am cringing.
If you know me well, and don’t be surprised if you find yourself saying- ‘I didn’t know that’, you know that I am not a lover of things. One of my mottos I find myself living by is, A place for everything and everything in its place. It is something within me more so than something I strive for. Honestly if there isn’t a place for it I find myself instinctively wanting to get rid of it. Clutter confuses me and makes it difficult for me to feel as though I can function at my best. That said, there are some things that I truly treasure. Not only things that have a purpose (although that is huge for me) but things that have a story.
Last evening I found myself in front of the mirror in my bathroom doing what I do every night. Taking my breast cancer pill, allergy medicine and my calcium. I took my glasses off and prepared to remove the one of only two make-up items that I wear daily, my mascara. As I looked into the mirror my heart sank. One of my earrings was gone. I had an earring in my right ear but not my left. I took the one out of my ear and found myself leaning to toss it in the trash. The thought that I might actually find the one that was lost did not seem possible to me. They are small and I had been so many places that day where I may have lost it. In fact, my next thought was that my puppy may have actually eaten it! The earring was in the ear that he always kisses, nuzzles and lightly chews on. More than once I have had a fleeting thought about this very possibility. I waved it off as I went about my tasks at hand. Rather than toss the one earring though I put it in my jewelry tray next to my sink where I put my wedding rings every night.
This morning after doing this, that and the other, the earring came to mind. I went upstairs and grabbed the one that remained. Bringing it downstairs I showed it to Michael and said, “If by chance you see an earring that looks like this somewhere in the house please pick it up. I lost one of them. They are special. I wear them a lot. I shared with him who gave them to me and when, making them all the more special. Michael immediately asked where I thought it might be. I could see the genuine concern on his sweet 8 year old face as his brow furrowed. He asked about all the places I had been where it may have fallen out and even contemplated the puppy eating it. I had been through the house, alongside the house, in the yard playing with Bailey and had walked home from the pet store in the dark. It could have fallen just about anywhere. I told him it was highly unlikely that we would find it but I wanted him to know just in case. Without a moment of hesitation Michael began walking around the kitchen and entry way. Suddenly he said, “Come on mom let’s go outside. Get your shoes!”
I hesitated. I didn’t want to discourage him or stifle his enthusiasm to help find my earring, and yet I highly doubted if it were lost outside that we would find it. I grabbed the puppy and clipped on his leash. He needed to go out to go potty anyway. As we headed to the side of the house I casually looked on the ground here and there. I hoped I would see it and could shout to Michael. I so wanted his efforts to be rewarded. I didn’t see it. I took puppy through the gate step by step losing what little hope I had. Michael was down in the yard looking through the grass. Having gone a different way out than dog and I. He let me know he didn’t see it anywhere. Wanting to let him off the hook, I told him it was okay and that I didn’t expect us to find it. Hearing the defeat in my voice, Michael ran up to the side of the house where I take puppy to go potty. I called after him that I had already walked through there and checked. He walked all the way up to the gate and stopped, bent down and then shouted as he sprang to his feet, “I found it mommy! I found it!”
I couldn’t believe it. It couldn’t possibly be. Seriously? Could he really have found it? He is known for teasing as he calls it. Thinking he is quite funny when he does it. Not lying, just teasing. Michael was so excited. He leaned down to the ground again as though he were picking an item up. Quickly he turned and dashed toward me with the biggest smile on his face. As he came closer, his arm out stretched I could in fact see a small shiny object pinched between his thumb and pointer finger. I could hardly believe my eyes. There in my son’s hand was the little blue and silver earring that I had lost yesterday. The very earring that matched the one that I had almost tossed out thinking it was nothing more than an orphan earring with a mate that would never be found. The earrings were a gift from a sweet friend, Elizabeth Krout. I admire her as a woman, friend, nurse and mother. Elizabeth gave me these earrings at my 40th ‘Red Carpet’ birthday party over 3 years ago. An evening I will never forget that was filled with love, laughter and friends. I would describe it as the second most perfect celebration in my life. The first being mine and Tom’s wedding. Both events having been held at our home. The earrings are small and simple, and yet they hold the weight of the memories of that special night. They mean so much to me.
Michael handed me the earring. As I held it in my hand my heart was overwhelmed. I wrapped my arms around my son and he in turn wrapped his arms around me. We hugged each other tight, so tight. Michael knew beyond a doubt that I appreciated his efforts to help me find this little earring. We lingered in our hug as I whispered in his ear telling me how happy and thankful I was for what he had done for me. It’s the little things. A little earring. A little time out of my son’s Saturday looking for my lost earring. Even if he hadn’t found it, I would have felt the love he extended to me while he searched all around inside and out for my treasure. Oddly, I believe that he was convinced the entire time that he would in fact find my earring