Tuesday, May 25, 2010


You are my sunshine
My only sunshine
You make me happy
When skies are gray
You'll never know, dear
How much I love you
Please don't take my sunshine away

I, like just about everyone, have sung You Are My Sunshine here and there throughout my life. A sweet little ditty, cute and cheerful, but nothing remarkable. If I could whistle I imagine I would find myself whistling it absentmindedly - seems like just the right melody to blow through pursed lips while strolling through frozen foods. Or it did before I had you, my dear.

I sing to you all the time, every day for the last 365. And for as long as I can remember I have ended our nights with You Are My Sunshine, whisper-sung breathily in your warm, sweet ear as I lay you in your bed. But unlike the song I've sung since childhood, this is heavy stuff. Not a silly throwaway nursery rhyme, but a deep and expressive hymn. Because it's true, every word of it.

You, Oliver Robin, are my sunshine - you bring the light into my life each morning and the world is certainly darker when you're not around. Like our sun, you, my son, keep me swirling around you, dancing with me in a symbiotic relationship. My body feeds you, yes, but you feed me so much more profoundly. (And admittedly less profoundly as I scoffle the sweet potatoes you don't, slurp the yogurt you won't, finish the pizza you can't.)

I know someday you will sing that song - maybe to assembled parents and their video cameras at a school concert - and maybe you will even remember hearing my voice whispering those words in your ear as you drift off. But until you have your own children you won't understand the depth of those words.

Because you will never know, dear, how much I love you.

I can't put into words the fullness of my love for you. How it's all encompassing and incomprehensible. This world is full of mothers who adore their children, but how could it be possible that they love their own as much as I love you? How could the world keep spinning under the gravity of all that love? I can't imagine that my own mother loves me anywhere near as much as I love you. I just can't fathom how that could be. But maybe I too will never know (dear) how much she loves me?

You were born 1 year ago - in that moment, both of us flushed, both of us confused, both of us crying. I've done my best this past year, often missing the mark, I'm sure, but always trying to give you everything you deserve. And you have given me so much. Sleepless nights, yes (fantasies that you would sleep through the night for the first time on your birthday were proven to be simply the dreamings of a madwoman) and frustration about your unwillingness to eat. But so much more than that. You have given me so many smiles and such a warmth in my spirit. You have given me open mouth, slobbery kisses and an identity beyond any I'd had before (Ollie's mom). You have given me bites of your pancake after you've sucked on it and a new relationship with a man I used to call Tal, but now call "daddy" (even if you don't quite yet). You have given me your trust, your love, your admiration, whether I deserve it or not.

Let there be no doubt, my sunshine, as you turn 1 and as you turn 101 that nobody loves you like your mama. And you will never know, dear, just how much that is.

Happy birthday (one day late) my Ollie Robin boy.



Lawfrog said...

This made me cry - in a good way! It reminds me of how much my own mother loves me and how I will probably never know the depth of it. Your writing continues to evoke a sense of awe in me. It is so expressive and beautiful.

Jill said...

Tears!! Beautiful, Amber. Love it!! I hope I can write such eloquent things for Dylan one day.

Gypsy said...

Beautiful! And so true. And you, my friend are sunshine to me. Xoxo,

Marianne said...

Wow!! I often wonder the same thing! It seems unreal that women all around me feel the same way as I do about their own children. =) Thanks for putting it into words! Happy Birthday Oliver!

Kelle said...

An absolutely beautiful post...and picture. Thank you for your precious comment too.