Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Never too Old to Be Mothered: A Thing I Want to Do for My Adult Children

Being sick when you're a mom is the worst.

Your kids keep needing to be fed and wiped and washed with no regard for the fact that you're on the third day of an awful migraine or you've been battling the flu for a week.Your other half might be able to bring you up some medicine (maybe) but he's kind of busy taking care of said kids. No one is lovingly mopping your brow with a cool cloth or bringing you a grownup sized blankie.  Best you're going to get is 20 stuffed animals heaped upon you and the Strawberry shortcake bandage that your miniature doctor has apparently determined are the correct remedies for your condition.

Of course, being sick as a young adult is no picnic.

I can remember feeling deathly ill in my early 20s, huddling cold and feverish in the room I was subletting in a cramped Brooklyn apartment. And when I say cold, I mean cold. There was a hole right at eye height in the wall that let in the winter gusts. My windows were frosted, sometimes on the inside. No one was bringing me anything. If I wanted Nyquil, I had to bundle up and walk the five blocks to the CVS. If I wanted food, it was the same deal since I was too broke to afford delivery.

Heck, even the good thoughts behind the cartoon bandage would have been appreciated as I froze my buns off all by my lonesome.

So last night as I lay curled and cramped in P.'s tiny bed sometime in the middle of the night because she woke up and cried for "someone to cuddle with" I started thinking about how when my littles aren't so little anymore, one thing I'd like to do is airmail them care packages when they're sick.

Maybe there's some magic age where you no longer want to be mothered when you have a fever, but I haven't reached it yet and I am 33 years old.

And since these will be my adult children, it means I could send things like whisky nips and gift cards for takeaway, fancy chocolates and the kind of warm, fuzzy socks that are awesome to get for Christmas but that you never buy yourself. Nothing babyish or that will make them say "Aww, jeez, mom." Cookies. A gift certificate for whatever the Netflix of tomorrow is. More takeaway gift certificates. And yes, Nyquil, because sometimes it's the only thing that gets the job done and I'll be darned if my kids are going to have to walk five blocks to get it when they really need it.

What special things do you want to do for your adult children someday?

mothering adult children

P.S. - I don't plan to write about what happened at the Boston Marathon yesterday. I'm sick to death of the non-update updates on the radio and TV. Suffice it to say, I hugged my kids a little tighter yesterday and we had sprinkle pancakes for dinner.


  1. Das ist wirklich ein schöner Gedanke! Meine Mama ist immernoch da für mich und hilft mir wo sie kann. Und ich möchte es genauso tun wie sie, wenn meine Bande mal groß ist. Es ist einfach schön wenn man "als Große"auch mal von der Mutter in den Arm genommen wird. :)

    Liebe Grüße,

    1. Ja, absolut! Du bist sehr glücklich, dass deine Mama in der Nähe ist!

  2. I am crying over your post today. My mother was not there for my miscarriages, not there to help with my newborns, not there when I was assaulted, not there when I was mugged, not even there when I sprained my ankle and had two kids to run after. When I asked her to help me with babysitting so I could network to get a job, she made a big deal out of it, until I finally asked someone else ... and then she made like I was a horrible daughter for not calling on her.

    I have desperately wanted someone who will bring my Nyquil. I hope that I can be that mother, too, that I don't forget what this feels like.

    1. You just broke my heart...hugs! Yeah, mine wasn't there for a lot either. Granted I didn't ask her many times. But when I did...

      I hope I'll always hear my child and be there in a way that makes him feel loved.

  3. Justine's reply breaks my heart. I wish I knew you, Justine, and that I could be there for you. I would in a heartbeat. We all need someone to be there for us.

    I feel so blessed for always being looked after, even when my mother has been far away. I'm a member of the Relief Society (http://mormon.org/faq/relief-society) and I always have had people checking in on me and helping me when I need it (and even when I am too tough to admit that I need it). It's pretty spectacular.

    But I too have never grown out of wanting to be mothered. If I am sick, I call my mom and tell her. Even if there's nothing she can do about it, it still makes me feel better. I hope my kids always feel the same way!

  4. I don't think we ever outgrow the need to be babied when we're sick. My first thought when I'm ill (twice so far this year) is that I want my mommy. My mom of course lives on the opposite side of the country she might as well be in Russia. I'd like to think she'd be there for me if we lived in the same city. I hope that I will always be emotionally and physically available for my kids even after they leave the nest. I can see myself as one of those parents who drives to the dorm to with a pot of chicken soup in the backseat or hops a plane at a moment's notice if my adult child was hurt in the Boston Marathon bombing. On that note, I your city is in my thoughts

  5. I love that you had sprinkle pancakes. Protecting your kids from the awful reality that adults keep creating is what needs to be done more than ever. And I do hope you are feeling better too, honey. Rest up.


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