Sometimes, I think about the future when you are grown and I am gone. When all that’s left of me are photographs and memories. I know what the photographs will show. I took most of them, after all. But the memories I’m less sure of. I wonder what will stick with you after all that time. How will you remember me?

One day, your grandkids will ask you about me. What will you say?

Will you tell them I was always distracted? Will you remember that I looked at my phone too much? Will you tell them I didn’t play enough, and I never seemed interested in your games?

You might.

RELATED: I Pray You Remember the Best of Me

But, I hope you also tell them I never said no to one more hug. I hope you tell them about our adventures to the car wash or to get Munchkins after a doctor’s visit. I hope you tell them about our epic Nerf battles and about reading the same stories over and over again. I hope you tell them I never finished a cup of coffee because I got too busy doing something for you. I hope you tell them about birthday streamers and living room campouts and toothbrushes in your stockings.

As you look through old photos, it will bring up memories. What will they be?

Will you remember how I was impatient and quick to anger? How the house was never clean and you never had any socks? Will you remember how I got angry if you asked what was for dinner?


But, I hope you also remember how I rubbed your head when it hurt. I hope you remember how you could weasel morning screen time out of me if it meant I could sleep a little longer. I hope you remember how it felt to climb onto my pillow and smoosh your face into mine. I hope you remember your sticky fingers while we glued and cut and colored. I hope you remember the goofy nicknames I called you and how I embarrassed you by cheering too loudly or kissing you too much.

When you come to a tough time with your spouse, you will think about your daddy and me.

Will you remember how I snapped at him? How I’d criticize the way he did things and disregard what he’d say?

I’m sure you will.

But, I hope you also remember how I encouraged him to follow his heart. How I apologized when I was unfair. I hope you remember how I loved him even when I was furious with him, and how I would laugh with him, snuggle with him, and forgive him.

When parenting is hard, you will think back on your childhood and how I handled it.

Will you remember the times I unfairly punished you? Will you remember how I yelled and snapped at you when things felt out of control? Will you remember the times I hurt your feelings and made you feel misunderstood or less important?

I bet so.

But, I hope you also remember how I let you be yourself. I hope you remember that I was always there. I hope you remember how I listened and tried to see your side. I hope you remember the times I let you feel sad and let you be mad. How I gave you time. How I gave you space. I hope you remember when I stuck up for you or reminded you that it wasn’t your fault. And I hope you remember how, after I messed up, I told you I was sorry.

RELATED: I Stopped Trying to Be a Perfect Mom and Started Believing I Was a Good One

It’s easy for me to get caught up in doing everything perfectly. I can get lost in never making the wrong choices or saying the wrong things. It’s easy to think that if I’ve messed up, I’ve ruined it forever. But I think in the end, you won’t remember only the good or only the bad.

I think in the end, it all counts.

It’s all a reminder that none of us are perfect, and that we can all recover from failure. It’s a reminder that amidst the good, there is often bad, and that amidst the bad, there is often good.

In those days, when I’m not there. When nothing’s left but stories and memories, and the only truth about me is the one inside your heart. In those days, when you look at how my life shaped yours, I don’t know what you will remember. I simply hope the joy outweighs the rest. 

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Nicole Lasley

Nicole is a wife and a mama to three energetic boys, a Licensed Massage Therapist, and loves sewing, writing, and cheesecake.

I Hope I Loved You Enough Today

In: Kids, Motherhood
child sleeping

As you lie sleeping in your bed, the weight of today lifts from my shoulders. The struggles of the day are quickly forgotten and I find myself looking at you in wonder. Memorizing your face and the dimples in your fingers. I want to rewind the day and tell you how good you did. How proud I am of you. I hope that I loved you enough today. As I drive you to school, I catch a glimpse of your sweet face staring back at me in the rear view. I replay the morning and find myself wondering. Did I...

Keep Reading

They Always Need You, Mama

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother hugs teen daughter

My 13-year-old daughter has been playing softball since she was seven and had a pink bat and pink socks and a pink helmet with her initials on the front. So, she’s stepped to the plate under pressure before. I’ll never forget when she was ten and hit a walk-off home run. Everyone cheered. I beat on the fence and proclaimed, “That’s my girl!” We went to get ice cream and I posted all about it on Facebook. She fell asleep that night with smeared eye black and a smile on her face. This week, though, she stepped up to the...

Keep Reading

You See a Teenage Boy, I See My Baby and Every Moment In Between

In: Motherhood, Teen
Teenage boy walking out the door with a backpack, black-and-white photo

I’m a mess in this moment, you guys. You’re probably looking at this picture and just seeing a kid walking out the door for his first day of sophomore year. No big deal, right? But you know what I see? I see my little boy with his Spiderman backpack on his first day of kindergarten. RELATED: He’s a Boy For Just a Little While Longer I see my baby on the first day he was placed in my trembling arms. I also see what you see, but with everything in between. Every year, every milestone, wrapped up in this image...

Keep Reading