I heard Sirena turn on the closet light to look for her clothes that she would wear to work today. Groaning I turned over in the bed, looking at the clock that said, 4:00 AM. Boy, she was up early, I thought. I wondered if I should get up and walk her to the bus stop. I could feel the cold air from outside coming through the window and slide deeper under the covers. Nawww…she might take offense to me walking her to the bus stop like a little girl, so instead, I say a quick prayer to the Father to watch out for her and to give her Guardian Angel charge over her while she was catching that early bus in the dark. Then I tried closing my eyes again so I could go back to sleep.
The thought came back to me, why don’t you go anyway? Then I wouldn’t have faith in the Father to take care of her, I reasoned. Soon as I thought it the answer came right away. Go anyway. So I got up and slipped into my joggers and begin putting my tennis shoes on.
“Where are you going?” she asked.
“With you,” I replied waiting for the refusal and getting none.
While she finished getting ready, I made lunch. Fried masa, lettuce, shredded cheese, tomatoes all wrapped individually, and chicken in red enchilada sauce with two chocolate chip cookies, a few of her favorite foods. I finished putting everything in a bag; while she slipped on her coat and grabbed her purse before we walked out the door.
The air was cold, but a warm breeze blowing light enough to rustle the orange and golden leaves ready to fall from the trees. I could still see early morning stars twinkling through the slowly fading night sky. Soft drops of rain fell intermittently trying to decide if they want to wake the earth from her slumber. I always loved walks in the morning while people are still sleeping and their cars are quiet and not polluting the air with the smog that sometimes chokes the fresh air away.
following her down the narrow sidewalk, through the tennis courts, then through the two-story rows of apartment buildings, to an open field of grass.
“You got to be kidding you walk through that?”
She laughed and replied, “Yes mom, are you sure you can find your way back home?”
“Sure I’m sure there are only 675 apartments, I’ll find mine.” We continued on laughing together.
“You know Nichole taught me that when you are going someplace to always look back every five minutes so you can find your way back home.”
“Really?” I smiled, feeling privileged to be let into the secret world of sisters.
We continue to walk through the field, me being careful to not step in holes and she walking confidently in her high heeled boots. Then at the end of the field more rows of apartments until finally, we come to the bus stop at the bottom of a hill.
“Okay is there a level place to walk down?” I ask looking up and down the street for a better place to go down. “
“No, this is it,” she says as she starts down the hill.
I follow carefully hoping my tennis won’t slip on the wet grass.
At the bottom of the hill, we were still laughing. I was glad that I came because I realized it was another opportunity to spend quality time with my daughter. Now that she is a young adult, in the eyes of the Father and the law of the land. The times we spend together become rare.
Sirena is the younger of my two daughters, and we can go from love to mad at each other in just a few seconds. Heck, what did you expect naming her after a Spanish Pirate? She was momma’s helper growing up and continues to surprise me with teddy bears, cards, like the two polar bears hugging, the purple frog on the red heart lily pad all bought with no particular day or holiday in mind. One day I bought me some flowers and told her how much I loved fresh flowers. She surprised me a blue vase that you can have filled with fresh flowers all the time. She still surprises me with her special touches. She says I am spoiled. She’s probably right; I had two daughters who do spoil me. Hopefully, because I did something right in raising them. The word says, “Raise up a child in the way that they will go, and they will not depart from it.” I always believed the Father gives parents and single mothers everything they need to raise a child because there is no instruction manual to read. Only the wisdom from past mothers, books, and occasionally from girlfriends who have no children.
You know I haven’t walked with you or stood at a bus stop since you were a little girl.”
She smiles at me and says that she was just going to remind me of the same thing. We both stand silent in that moment of time. I can see her at six years old, holding my hand as we walk through snow to the bus stop. Listening to her talk and answering every question while waiting. “Momma, when will it stop snowing?” “Momma why is the sky gray?” “Momma do I have to eat Miz Crawford’s scrambled eggs?” I smile as I look at the young woman standing before me.
My daughter is not a little girl anymore she is a beautiful woman now. My eyes well with tears at this thought. One day she will be married, have her own career, have her own home and be holding the hand of her daughter as they walk to school, or the bus stop. She will smile down and say to her baby¸ “Always look back so you can remember your way home sweetheart.”
We have been through a lot like the journey to the bus stop. Our life has been through a lot of narrow ways like the sidewalk, level areas like the tennis courts. Days of uncertainty that you could not see what was in front or on the side of you; like the apartment buildings. Big fields of nothing but grass; like the long months of not having a place to call your own. High hills where you could see the rewards, but scared to hike down and grab get it; like the hill to the bus stop.
it’s okay to look back so you can remember where home is, so you can remember where you came from, so you know there is always love that will carry in your heart!
And I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, “Says the Lord Almighty.
2 Corinthians 6:18