Amy Rees Anderson

Thanks for Waiting Up

Growing up I wasn’t always the easiest teenager.  I was stubborn, fiercely independent and ridiculously tenacious.  I thought I knew everything. I thought I didn’t need anyone to watch out for me.  And even though my parents were aware I didn’t want anyone watching out for me, every night I went out I would come home to find my mother sitting at the kitchen table, reading her latest book, eating a bowl of popcorn.  She always tried to pretend that she wasn’t waiting up for me and that she just happened to still be reading her book….but the woman had 10 children to care for all day and had to be utterly exhauseted so I always knew that she very much was waiting up to see me get safely home.  But I would play the game and go along with her charade and we would sit and finish her bowl of popcorn together and she would let me share details of my night out with her.  I am certain she just wanted to climb in bed but she never let me feel that at the time.

It wasn’t until I became and adult and a mother myself that significance of my mother’s actions really hit me – the appreciation it gave me for her is something I don’t know quite how to put into words.  So even though I am not a poet by any means (so excuse my amateur with this), I decided to write a little poem to express what her actions meant to me – hopefully she reads my blog and will see this 🙂

You gave me room to grow

You taught me what was right,

Yet you always waited up for me

 Late into the night.

You sat at the kitchen table

Reading your latest book,

Having a bowl of popcorn

Trying not to look

Worried about my safety

Or my spiritual wherewithal,

Praying I would be protected

Asking God not to let me fall.

When I would finally come home

As tired as you had to be

You would sit and talk for hours

And let it be ‘all about me’.

It wasn’t until later in life

I realize what it meant

The love you showed to me

In that little time you spent.

You made me feel important

Safely watched for in your care.

And that silly bowl of popcorn

Remains an image, forever there.

It’s tucked inside my memory

And when I’m faced with a trial

I know for certain my mom will be waiting

With popcorn, a book, and a smile.

I love you Mom.  Thanks for always being there for me.  Thanks for always waiting up for me. Thanks for pretending not to be tired and for talking with me into the night.  Thanks for making my world feel secure by showing me that I always had a mother at home waiting for me to return safely.  I love you forever.

Love,

Amy

6 Comments

  • leslie says:

    I love you more ❤ ❤ ❤!
    Thanks for choosing to be my daughter, for all you do and have done for me, and for giving me such terrific grandchildren. Thanks for understanding that, with all our faults and failings as we strive to be good Moms, nothing matters to us more than the well-being and happiness of our children and their children. That really IS what it’s all about! Hugs and kisses to you dear. And come and share a bowl of popcorn!

  • Melissa says:

    Awww. You guys made me get all misty. 🙂 love all around.

  • Erv Beal says:

    I wasn’t that good a dad. But I did stay on my knees in the living room until the last one came home. Easy to say that I look up to the six of them. They have forgiven a lot. Wonderful families with 19 children among them. BYU grads. Temple marriages. They have an incredible mother!! If I could do it over again, I, a recovering book-a-holic, would ADD the popcorn! :>)

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