My 4 ½ year old, the Sunshine Bean, is this week’s student of the week in her preschool class. This, of course, is very exciting. It involved a homework assignment which we completed together. She had to answer questions about things like her favorite color – red – and favorite subject – math. One of the questions was, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” and Sunshine answered without hesitation.
“Just a mommy, like you.”
Just a mommy.
I’m sure I should have rushed to tell her that she can be anything she wants to be. And she can. My middle child is blessed – and blesses us – with a sweetness and generosity of heart that amaze me daily. She is a true nurturer. She also loves mathJ I can see her growing up to be a teacher, an engineer, or somehow be involved in healthcare. But I have to admit that her response made me smile – inside and out – and made me proud. Proud of both of us.
See I am “just a mommy.” But not in the sense that being just a mommy is somehow less than being a mommy who is also something else. Rather, for me being “just a mommy” is exactly and fully what I want to be. I take pride in my role as a full-time mom to my three little beans. I love being here to take care of them and hear their little stories and make their lunches and clean up after them all day every day. Sure there are times when I hide in the pantry and sneak cookies out of the bag just to get two minutes of peace. But the truth is that I love being “just a mommy.” There is a contentment I feel in this role that nothing else ever gave me and I don’t believe anything else ever could. I am proud of the people my kids are growing up to be and I am proud of me.
Today I learned that Sunshine is proud of me, too. For when she said that she wants to be “just a mommy,” what was in her face and voice was that being a mommy was a happy, proud, valuable thing to be. So yes, she will continue to learn and grow and find out all of the many, many things that she can be when she grows up. But she will also grow up knowing that being “just a mommy,” can provide fulfillment and joy. That if she chooses it one day, it is a title she can wear with pride.