I hope you would indulge me by sharing this letter with one other person. Really the only person who I could ever speak to in this manner.
I told April about hands, and I find I must tell you about feet and the footsteps that I trail behind.
So much of what is in me was started from you, but I remember as a child how I would fixate on your feet. I know you hate when people stare but you still let me. And all the strange and silly questions you get asked, you were well prepared for because of me and my childish questions.
When I was young, I would trace the scars on your feet and wonder aloud at what could cause them. I would count the pretty patterns of cartoon like stitches and test you about their number. And even though my own hands and feet were always cold and hard, yours were always soft and hot. On days when you were very quiet you would let me press my small feet against yours. I never told you but I would wait to hear your gentle sigh of relief.
It took a while for me to recognize your pain, and even then I saw it as another way in which you are strong. And it made me revisit all those memories of how it felt when I would trace the scars or press my feet against your soles, and I remained in awe of you.
Perseverance is not the word. Strength is not the word. Love is not the word.
Motherhood, I suppose is it.
But beyond that, your feet are symbolic of all the lessons. Planted feet when you stand your ground against exasperating children or a prejudiced shop owner refusing to serve you. Tip toed feet as you reach up to embrace your son. Bent feet as you are on your knees, speaking to those who could not stand any taller or to the one being who is highest of all.
I consider your feet as I create my own journeys, and find myself just following yours. I stumble along the path I make and wonder if you ever did. I turn a corner and find myself winded, I sit down to catch my breath until I hear your voice. You wonder at my future and my choices and I laugh because if you were to look down at your own feet, you would see your own strong and deeply indented footprints in the earth behind you, and then you would see me clumsily placing my feet in each groove.
Until next time,