Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Love, Mom

When I was little, I'd come home from school, go up to my room, and find the bed neatly made with my stuffed animals on it arranged in some silly anthropomorphic way: peeking out from behind pillows, curled up under the blankets with stuffed paws tucked sweetly under stuffed heads, sitting in a circle as if holding a round table. This was my mother's doing, of course, and she admits now that she got tremendous pleasure out of setting those stuffies up in a new way every day, imaging my giggles when I came home and found them.

My thing is lunch box notes. I love writing them. Sometimes my lunch box notes are so elaborate, I'm afraid Owen's teacher will think I'm an obsessive compulsive freak with too much time on her hands. I compose poems, write rebuses, draw illustrations, decorate with stickers. I am endlessly amused at myself over the clever lunch box notes I craft. The best ones I show to John before tucking them away in Owen's bag. John is never as impressed as I'd like him to be.

Like my mother and I about her stuffed animal jamborees, Owen and I don't really discuss the lunch box notes. I don't think he's even mentioned them more than once or twice, and he never comments on them in detail. In some ways, this is disappointing. It makes me wonder if I'm kidding myself to imagine him reaching into his lunch box with giddy anticipation, excited to see what my notes will say every day. I picture him reading and giggling and smiling to himself and feeling my mom-love from 15 miles away. And maybe that is how it goes, but he never tells me so.

I do have one clue, however, that the notes mean something to him after all. Every day, Owen comes home with a tidy lunch box. In true type-A fashion, he is sure to throw away his scraps and trash instead of stuffing them back in the bag for me to deal with later. But he has never, no never, thrown away one of my notes. Every evening, when I unzip the bag to prepare the next day's lunch, today's note flutters out, neatly refolded. He keeps them. While all else is tossed in the trash, he keeps them.

1 comment:

jen said...

i love lunch box notes.