Parenting & Other Life Stories

Photo Prompt #39: Never Let You Go

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Never Let You Go

“There has never been, nor will there ever be, anything quite so special as the love between a mother and son.” – Unknown

It was a rough work day and as it neared the end I found myself eagerly awaiting my son Ow’s normal greeting of a running knock over hug. I am a softie for those warm moments of intense affection where his five year old arms squeeze tightly around me and his little voice whispers, “I’ll never let you go.” In those few seconds my day’s struggles melt away as I embrace not only his tiny body but my best self: mother.

Today is different though because the exuberant hug is absent. Regardless, Ow is the first thing I see when I enter my home. He is sitting at the table with his back to me and he is mechanically manipulating his Lego. His small back is tense and rigid with pent up emotions. I ache to gather him into my arms but I can read his body language and I know that’s not what he needs right now. Instead I kiss the top of his head and I sit down beside him. “How was your day?” I ask. He gives no response and he doesn’t stop clicking Lego bricks together.  That bad? I think to myself. I remain sitting beside him while I detail my day to my husband.

Eventually I get up and start doing my after work chores and I find myself and Ow are alone in the room. Suddenly he bolts without warning straight at me and I barely have time to brace before he launches himself. I somehow manage to swing him up and hold him tight while I sway back and forth. He clings to me with his little arms and legs. “Ah, sweetie. Did you have a bad day?’ I whisper to him. He nods and buries his face into my shoulder. “You know what bud, mommy had a bad day too. You heard me talking to daddy about it and it made me feel a bit better.” His head comes up and he looks at me, considering. Nothing. He buries his head again.

My husband already shared what he knew about Ow’s day based off the daycare staff’s report; kids can be mean. Nonetheless, I am enjoying the cuddle and thinking to myself I will never let you go and it makes me realize something. Inspired I whisper, “You know what makes mommy feel better after a bad day?” A very quiet, “what” comes from the area of my shoulder? “Hugs and kisses from you and your brother. That always makes me feel better.”

His response is like watching a storm break to reveal the sunshine and a rainbow. He smiles shyly at first but the grin cracks across his face and he actually glows! His arms tighten around me and in that moment nothing else matters for either one of us; our bad days are forgotten!

Shari Marshall – written in 2019, posted in 2020

5 thoughts on “Photo Prompt #39: Never Let You Go

  1. Awww, melts my heart!! That was wonderful and such heartfelt words. A mother’s love is so special. I miss those days with my young children. HUGS and snuggles are the very best! Wonderfully written! ❤️❤️❤️

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