Next week I’ll be back on my community engagement soap box, but this week I’d like to get vulnerable and share some memories.
When I was about four or five, my family was living in Dayton Ohio, and during the fall my dad had a rare weekend off and we decided to go visit a farm. This was way before the insta-perfect pumpkin patch trips, this was the time of big glorious 80’s hair and hair bands. During that time at the farm, my mother thought it’d be a cute idea for my brother and I to go and feed the goats. Imagine it from her perspective, there would be pictures taken, and wonderful memories made of her two boys doing this together, this plan could not go wrong… until it did. For the life of me, I cannot remember if my brother and I ever fed the goats because my mom bent over to give instructions, and her wonderfully big 1980’s hair style was consumed by hungry goats. My mom started panicking, my brother and I were laughing, and my father stood by taking pictures. It is a memory we all still cherish and for years I have thought, “I cannot wait to have memories like this with my kids.”
If you read my blog last week, it was all about my son’s baptism. For a decade my wife and I struggled through infertility, adoption fails, and other setbacks to having a kid until she became pregnant with Evan in the summer of 2021. Ten years of hard Mother’s Days with complex feelings and uncertainty. Evan was born two weeks before Mother’s Day last year, and his timing couldn’t have been better, because that year our house was finally filled with the sounds of a child… and a family of squirrels that decided to run in to our house and take up residence in our fridge. It wasn’t goats eating her hair, but it was a fun memory none the less. Things don’t always work out how we plan, but that’s part of the journey whether we like it or not.
Happy Mother’s Day.
Grace and peace,
George Benson (he/him)
(Image: Screen shot from the music video Treat Your Mother Right by Mr. T. It’s a trip, but worth the 2m23s [except for the kids insulting one another at the beginning of the music video that eventually leads to a mom putdown where MR. T comes in and spreads pearls of wisdom about moms. This is the 80’s at its “finest” and by “finest” I mean, this is the 80’s they don’t talk about.].)