Monday, February 28, 2011

Be Careful

I have uttered those words probably even more than the words, "I love you". From the time my daughters were born, it became almost a mantra. When my oldest was walking (at 8 months old), I would yell, "Be careful" as she climbed up on tables, chairs, shelves, name it. I'm not sure if she actually heeded those words or even understood them.

When my youngest, Single Boo was born, there were a few medical issues that caused me to use those words frequently. We had to "be careful" when feeding her because certain foods just didn't quite digest right. We had to "be careful" when her tiny leg was put in a cast from a curvature in her leg. Even when the cast came off and she would walk or run, I'd yell, "Be careful" because she easily tripped over air or her own two feet. Wouldn't you know it, Single Boo became a gymnast - a really good one at that. One that had skills like somersalting on a 4 inch 4 foot high balance beam, backwards. "Be careful!" I would tell her before she walked into the gym. And I meant every word.

As a mom, I knew the dangers that could happen if Girl Boos weren't careful.

As they grew older and started making friends and eventually, dating, once more, I reminded them to "be careful". I didn't want them to date guys that would take advantage of their sweetness, their zest for life and their innocence. When they got their driver's licenses, before they walked out the door each day, I yelled, "be careful". And once again, I meant it.

What I realized after the billionth time of reminding them to "be careful" was that I wasn't telling them "don't do". I wanted them to experience the joys of trying new things as long as they knew that there could be risks involved. By reminding them to "be careful" I was actually telling them to SOAR, DANCE, LAUGH, ENTERTAIN, ENJOY, LOVE with pure delight but always know that in life, there can be bumps and bruises along the way - brace for them but never stop for fear of trying.

After I hung up from talking to my dad on the phone in North Carolina last night, I realized something. Every time we talk, he ends the call with, "Be careful." I now know that "Be Careful" also means, "I love you."


Mari said...

I loved this post! It captures me as a Mom too and the way you ended it was perfect.
I used to tell my kids to be careful when they left the house and they started to say - "I'm going to drive like a maniac". So then I started to tell them to have fun and drive like a crazy person. They knew what I meant!

Jill said...

Great post! My Mom always did the same as I was growing up and still does today! LOL I find I do the exact same thing with my girls. :-)


Mining for Diamonds said... got my mama heart with that one! As a mama of a daughter that is 7, I can relate to not wanting to crush her spirit, and wanting her to experience the fullness of life...and yet, letting her go to experience the bad with the good. Thank God for His grace!!!!

Veronica Lee said...

My mom did that and that's what I do too.

That was a lovely post, Simone!

Have a nice day!

Retromus-ik said...

:) My mom does the same. As I'm on my way out of the house, she tells me to be careful. Even more so in the winter months when there's a possibility that I could slip on ice;)

Helene said...

You know, I had never even realized how many times I say "be careful" to my kids until I read this post. I pretty much say it from sun-up to sun-down, though I doubt my kids pay much attention to it!!

Such a beautifully written post, as always!

Nezzy said...

This is so true. I have those in my life who have had such phrase that weren't the touchy feely 'I Love You' type but the words they spoke had the same meanin'!

Great read sweetie!

God bless and have a marvelous day! place!

Kathy said...

How true. I never realized how much I said it either. It's about all we have left that we can do for our adult children, that reminds them how precious they are to us.

Relyn said...

I say,"Be careful" a lot. Even more, I find I say, "Be smart."

Buckeroomama said...

So true. By saying "Be careful," we let them "do," but letting them know that they have to watch out for bumps and possible owies along the way. Great post!

Life with Kaishon said...

Oh my goodness. This made me cry.
I love that you wanted them to go out and experience life...just carefully!
You are a great Mama Simone. A very great one!

Faith Imagined said...

Oh! I say those two words all the time! There is pain and suffering in this life, but I know when we get to heaven, we won't have to say "be careful." We can simply say, "SOAR," "RISE," "LIVE!" I can't wait!

emilene said...

Hi there! I just discovered your blog through someone who joined my blog, SO glad I found it! Absolutely love what I've read so far and will be following from now on. Thank you for such great, candid posts, I look forward to reading more!

Diva Ma @ Mommy Fabulous said...

This is a beautiful post.

On the funny side, it reminds me of the song from Barney, "Saying Be Careful Means I Love you."

As a parent, telling your children to be careful while they are growing up is our way of giving them all of our love. You have obviously been a wonderful mama and the Boos are so lucky to have you.


Anita said...

This is the sweetest post. :) The love shared throughout your family is so wonderful to have.

ethelmaepotter! said...

Oh yes. You know one of things I love about you, Simone? That you can write so much, so beautifully, and so concisely, about everyday things that we all take for granted - that we never think about because, well...because they're just part of our lives. Be careful. I never even think about. I just say it. And yes, you're right, it does say I love you, and even though I realized that, I never put it into words, even in my thoughts.

But YOU nailed it. I will never say BE CAREFUL again without thinking of you and your all-powerful wisdom.

Danica said...

I have to laugh because I am always telling Lauren "I love you and be careful" every time she walks out of the door.


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