You know the old adage about cutting the apron strings. I wear an apron quite often – while preparing dinner, throughout dinner (good protection from all those greasy little paws), and out onto the front step for popsicles or to get the mail. It usually comes off before baths and story time. I like wearing an apron. It makes for a good dish towel on the go. It has pockets for wrappers and other bits of leaves, lint, or sticks the girls hand me, and I can clip my cell phone to it and talk (with my earpiece) while cooking, building forts, or refereeing with both hands.
But those strings! They’re so tempting for tiny fingers – just dangling there – asking to be pulled. So I am browning beef in a skillet and… “ssssslip” – my apron is untied! Sami has one string, Ali has the other. A team effort. And now I am tethered to my girls (two independent moving objects) as I try to maneuver from refrigerator to pantry to stove. Eventually they let go and I pause to retie, but within minutes, they have migrated back to the kitchen (obviously disinterested with the slew of toys they have pulled from the basket) and those sneaky fingers reach up again. “Sssslip!” I am undone!
A few days ago, I just laughed out loud as they shook the strings like I was their dog on a leash, and giggled at each other. Then I remembered a conversation I had with Eliza last week as she snuggled onto my shoulder. I whispered to her, “I don’t think I want you to grow up.” She replied matter-of-factly, “But I have to Mommy! So I can slide down the big pole at the park!” (Such important goals.) So I said,” Okay. But will you always be mine?” “Oh yes, sure I will Mommy” she answered.
I don’t mind the apron strings, untied, undone, strung out. They connect me to my little ones – a reminder that, for now, my girls want to be where I am, with me, by me, as they swirl around my feet and I try to get dinner on the table. It won’t always be this way.