Dear Mom, I'm Sorry...

Dear Mom,

This letter might come as a shock to you, but I have an inkling that you may have been expecting something of the sort of the past year or two.

Observing my journey into motherhood, from the first time you heard the exciting (and to me, sort of terrifying) news that you were to soon be a Grandma, to those wonderful but short weeks of newborn bliss as you dotted on your grandson, and into the current stage of terrific-two's, I know being a Grandma, and seeing me, your daughter, be a mom, has brought you great pleasure, albeit sometimes at my expense.

At one point in my life I thought you were simply over dramatizing the events of my childhood. You were quick to tell me, and whoever else might be listening, that you hoped someday my children would give me at least half as much trouble as I gave you.

But Mom, I wasn't a problem child, really.

Sure, I may have rubbed Vaseline in my hair and spilled baby powder on the freshly washed hardwood floors, but that wasn't so bad. And yes, I do remember biting holes into bags of Gummi worms and Good n' Plenty licorice candies at Oak Hill because I knew that was the only way I would be a able to convince you to buy them for me. And there was that time I weighed the consequences and decided that cutting my own hair would be worth that spanking I would receive for such an action, because while a spanking would hurt for a moment, it would take my hair much, much longer to grow back.

But a problem child? Who? Me?

You and Dad told stories of how I didn't always think through things well, like early one spring when the creek was rushing violently from a flash flood, and I decided that it would be the perfect time to try my hand a white water rapids. Dad still sighs with relief when he mentions that he caught me, inner tube in hand, near the mouth of a clogged culvert, where I would have surely been sucked in and drown had he not been there to intervene. Or how my brilliant idea to ice skate on the frozen manure pit resulted in poop up to my waist, and a very stern lecture from you on the reason why you insisted the landlord install a fence around the pit in the first place -- to keep children, like me, out of it.

You told me I was the reason for your grey hair, and I scoffed, not willing to take that guilt.

But Mom, now that I have a child of my own, one who colors on my walls and breaks light bulbs on the concrete floor and drinks from mud puddles and sometimes wanders a bit too close to the road, I sort of believe you.

And I'm sorry.

Just yesterday I had the biggest scare in mothering so far.

Carson went missing, I couldn't find him or his puppy Mia anywhere. It was after some time, after looking in the garage and old barn and by the road, after wearing my lungs out from calling their names, that I spotted Mia running back towards the house, alone. She was coming through the woods, wet from the creek water. In that moment I suddenly didn't care that I was barefoot or wearing a dress, and it didn't matter that I am pregnant and haven't ran in months. If I would have been timed, my pace would have broken all personal bests, for I ran as fast and as hard as a could. And when I arrived, breathless with feet bleeding to the creek bank, there stood my brown eyed, blond haired, beautiful little boy, completely unaware of the adrenaline pumping through my veins or the relief and tangled emotions flooding me. Look Mom, I found the creek! He told me enthusiastically.

It was in that moment, Mom, that I opened my mouth and you came out.

I squeezed Carson tightly, kissed him firmly, breathed a prayer of thanksgiving to my Jesus, and told him that he is the sole reason for the grey hair I found.

Barely two years into this mothering gig, and I completely believe you. Yes, I was a problem child. And while I know there were many days where you felt like you were barely surviving, and certainly not thriving as you mothered five loud and rowdy kids, I want you to know you did well. You kept us loved and alive, and that is reason enough to say that as a mother, you were very, very successful.

I am so grateful for you (and realize now that I probably owe a lifetime supply of hair dye to cover those greys).

Much love,


  1. This is great Sarah! Great writing, great stories, great humor.

  2. Goodness, I can imagine how scary it was to be missing Carson and then find him in the CREEK! He's an adventurer like his mama, sounds like. ;)

    1. My heart still skips a beat when I think about it. Since then he has tried to venture out to the creek again, but I've been doing a better job at keeping an eye on him and he hasn't made it to the waters edge. He keeps me busy!

  3. Oh my word, this is hilarious! I mean, extremely scary! I can't imagine how freaked out you were!! It's your writing style that is hilarious. :) Have you ever thought of writing a book?!

    1. It's funny now, but in the moment, goodness, my heart!

      Thank you, Chels! I would love to write a book. It's definitely something I've thought about a lot, I just don't know yet what I would write about. Motherhood, I guess could be a start. :)

  4. Your voice is delightful. I am thankful he was OK! Never stop writing! You have an amazing gift!