Cameo in church today: a pretty little girl about 5 or 6, sleeveless off-white shift dress, long slim arms indicative of a growing child. She comes running in happily to check in with her mother after the children's Sunday school lessons are over, and immediately wants to run back to her friends outside. The mother catches her by the arms and lovingly brushes back her little girl's hair from her face, softly speaking to her in low undertones. The little girl nods, hurriedly, not really looking back at her mother, all attention outside. The mother continues to hold onto the child's arm, still gently fingerbrushing her hair and continuing to say something. The girl nods again, distractedly, straining to get away. The mother still doesn't let go and the girl nods once more and says something, glancing for a second at her mother. The mother seems satisfied and releases the child who scampers off joyfully towards the big doors outside.
Fast-forward 50 years later: the child is a grown woman watching on some life-sized projector screen a video of the little interchange with her mother today. And it strikes me, with my experience of no longer having a mother around, what she'd give to have not struggled to pull away and instead snuggled happily and contentedly in her mother's loving arms.
Age 10: I love you, Mum!
Age 14: My Mum is so annoying!
Age 18: I wanna leave this house!
Age 25: Mum, you were right..
Age 30: Mum, forgive me?
Age 50: I don’t wanna lose my Mum!
Age 70: Mum, I love you so much.