The boys gather on the other side of the bar and reach for the cookies I just placed on cooling racks. I tell them they have to wait a few minutes to let them cool, and they can hardly stand the anticipation.
They sit and talk to me as I continue with the business of my baking, methodically rotating cookies sheets and dough, and the timer with my thoughts. As they watch and wait, they sing my praises.
“Out of all the homemade recipes, these are my favorite.”, says my 15 yr. old son, who has outgrown all the Christmas crafts and activities by now. I’m so thankful he’s not too old for cookies.
“I love mom’s cookies because she makes everything from scratch.”, my 8 yr. old chimes in with this two cents, matter-of-factly, appreciating the ingredients of a homemade treat. He is my chef, after all. Of course, he would.
My husband grabs one passing through the kitchen and declares with a warm mouthful, “These are the bomb!”
In this moment, I am happy.
The thoughts I had racing a moment before have quieted, as if they want me to hear the words spoken over me as much as I do.
You are not a horrible mother, my heart translates their praise and I’m thankful for the reminder.
I treasure up every kind word they’ve shared and I want to hold onto this moment forever. I begin to wonder if it’s possible that this memory of me could replace all of the bad ones. The memories of the “me” I’m not so proud of. I hope it can.
The moment lingers for what feels like forever just for an instant, and then all of a sudden, the first batch of cookies is gone.
“Man those are good!”, says my oldest.
You’re good at baking, mom!”, says my little man.
Then they’re gone, just like the cookies.
The business of my baking picks back up and I find that rhythm again.
Cookie sheets and dough.
My thoughts and the timer.
I can’t stop thinking. Hoping.
I hope they remember the cookies.