” How do you thank someone who took you from crayons to perfume…”~ To sir with Love
Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there! You deserve to be celebrated!! If you have a mother, HUG HER. If you can’t hug her, then CALL HER!! If you are like me, and are unable to either, this short essay is for you. We may be without our mothers, but I’m sure God has place surrogates in our path. My Aunties and Mother-in-Law are mine.
Seemingly small and insignificant, a single button can appear as meaningless as loose change found in a pocket. However, this button was special. It was a surprise. It carried more meaning than one found on the floor or tossed in a junk drawer.
I had a pair of pajamas I loved to wear. They had long sleeves and pants, but were lightweight so I wore them almost any time of year. Colored in an icy blue with polar bears, they were yet another lovely gift from my mother.
My mother was the jack –of- all -trades: creative, handy and smart. If I needed help with a project or to fix a hem, she was the first person I went to. After she passed, I missed having my go to person to help with even the most tedious of tasks.
One day, while I was wearing my polar bear P.J.s, I noticed a button was missing because my belly button was staring back at me. Normally, I would go to my mom and ask for her to please fix it. Now, it was my responsibility to do the fixing and mending. I didn’t want to though. Not that sewing a button was beneath me, or that I found it challenging. It was the principle of the matter. The woman who carried me through life’s highs and lows, made my lunch, taught me how to love and sewed the buttons back on was gone.
Instead of being the adult and finding needle and thread, I left the gap in my pajamas for months. Though I loved wearing them, they always reminded me “You’re on your own kid!”
Months later, I went on vacation and my mother-in-law graciously agreed to stay at our house and care for our pets. Several weeks after returning home, I donned my polar bear P.J.s, and realized a familiar draft had vanished. I looked down to see a new brown button amongst the other white ones. At first, I pondered the possibility that I was experiencing memory lapses.
‘When did I take the initiative to sew this button back on?’
Then I knew. It wasn’t me. It was my mother-in-law. She had done our laundry while we were gone and noticed a piece needed mending.
Like my mother had done, she had taken the time and consideration to add a new button since I had lost my own. Seemingly insignificant, a mere button can be, but in the right hands, it meant much.
I looked at that button for a moment, and was reminded I wasn’t on my own. God never intended it to be that way. Sometimes we are in need of those gentle reminders.
The old button was lost but replaced by another. One white, one brown- different in appearance but each kept me in line just the same. I love my new button and appreciate it being there every time it’s needed.
Sometimes a button is just a button, sometimes it means much more.