It took four years, and hundreds of photos, but this October brought about my greatest accomplishment. The stars aligned, the sun beamed down, and magic happened. For once, beauty was on my side, and the world was a glorious amazement.
No, I’m not talking about the birth of my child. I mean, that day was pretty amazing, I won’t lie. I’m talking about the day I got the “my kid is at a pumpkin patch, staring at the camera, and smiling” picture.
Let me restate this for visual effect: my child, surrounded by pumpkins, staring at the camera, AND smiling. Not just the back of his head. Not just a faraway, mournful gaze. Not him staring at some random bug on the side of a rotting pumpkin. Not just chasing flies, and playing catch with baby pumpkins. My tiny human did something amazing for his mommy, and it only took four years of trying!
What’s the idiom? If at first you don’t succeed?
See? It does work!
Try, try again.
And try I did.
The day put me in a special sort of mood. I felt like I could conquer the world, Super Mom cape flying. So, like any normal mother riding the high of a special tiny human miraculous feat, I let Tiny Tot pick out his very own pumpkin. Of course, what I expected differed from reality. In my head, my tiny person would pick a normal-sized pumpkin. I mean, last year the pumpkin he chose was tiny, cute, and could be adorned with stickers. That was what I was expecting. Nope, not for Tiny Tot. Adequate just wouldn’t do.
This year he chose the big pumpkin.
Like, a BIG pumpkin.
We’re talking the biggest pumpkin in the patch.
Sigh. Ugh. Great.
I had to remind myself that I told him he was allowed to choose. Still, I did my fair share of, “Oh, Son Son, check out this half-the-size-of-your-pumpkin pumpkin. I really like this one. Do you like it?” Stubborn as his momma, my tiny one would not be deterred. He wanted the big pumpkin. The big, big, giant, mammoth-sized pumpkin.
So, I did what any single mother would do: I tried to lift it. Oops. I encountered one unforeseen problem. I might be tall, but I’m still a scrawny female. This pumpkin easily doubled the reach of my arms. In fact, next to this pumpkin, Tiny looked … well, … tiny.
With the help of an elderly gentleman who had less upper arm strength than my tiny human and I combined, the big, giant pumpkin found its way into my car. Of course, the entire way home I doubted the wisdom of purchasing the World’s Largest Pumpkin. Not to mention, in the back of my mind, I could hear one of my surgeons reprimanding me to “not be stupid” about my knee.
But, the sun was shining, and my child had beamed his beautiful smile from the midst of a pumpkin patch. At my camera.
Rainbows, leprechauns, fairies, sunshine, unicorns.
After my glory picture, I could lift a mountain! Plus, it’s a pumpkin. Hello. A pumpkin is a fruit, right? Fruit isn’t heavy; it’s edible.
The big, giant pumpkin was carted into the house. Tiny Tot and I drew its face, killed it, scooped out its guts, and butchered it until it was smiling. Then I realized what I really needed: another picture.
Who would I be if I didn’t take pictures of my child? I mean, seriously. Besides, if I could get one picture, I could get another, right? This day was about to be epic, and awesome!
So, I carted that dead piece of badly-designed pumpkin art over to the wall, plopped my tiny living doll beside it, told them both to smile at me, and click!
In one day.
So now I’m riding on unicorns, waving a magic wand, cape billowing in the breeze of my success. It was then that Tiny asked me if Rexaur could be allowed to come in and play with his pumpkin.
Ummm … puppy plus pumpkin? Disaster. No, no, no. The pumpkin had to be moved, again.
And so I lifted the damn pumpkin off the ground. With a knee injury. Sigh.
So now, just like last year, Tiny has come to once again hear the phrase, “Don’t touch Mommy’s bad knee!” Except … I’m pluraling it, because I hurt them both. As in the only two knees I have on this planet. Bye, bye, rainbows, I see rain.
What did I learn? Well, one thing’s for certain … there’s always a lesson in life. Because, I always figure them out after the fact.
First, I learned to “not be stupid” with load-bearing joints. There’s only so many of them, and when they hurt it sucks. A lot.
Second, I learned that life is just fine with back-of-the-head pictures, and faraway gazes.
Those pictures are just as cool, and they are just as epic.