First of all, I need to extend a huge, heartfelt thank you for your overwhelming response about our latest venture, Table Twenty-Five. We’re delighted about doing something meaningful and thrilled to be sharing the journey with you. Truly. The tickets for the first event were very limited but we’re contemplating adding more for upcoming ones since we already have people on the waiting list. I sincerely say that in the most unpretentious way possible. We really just wanted a quaint dinner party and an intimate art session and 15 seemed like the perfect number for some reason. The point is, thank you for your gracious, positive and supportive comments. We have a really lovely evening planned for you and that’s all I’ll say about it for now.
I received a text from my mother about 30 minutes after our tickets when on sale offering to buy some in case people weren’t able to make it. I closed my eyes and imagined a table filled with all the people I loved. My mom and siblings and husband and children and it honestly brought a smile to my face. Mainly because I knew at that moment that my table would never be empty. There would always be people wanting to sit for a while and engage in meaningful conversation. Someone who would always offer to fold the napkins or clean the stemware or scrub the last few stubborn pots and pans. I can’t describe it exactly but the feeling was warm and beautiful and it reassured me in the most soothing way possible. It was a lovely little message in the midst of an otherwise hectic morning and it came at the perfect time. A time that allowed me to be contemplative and really, really grateful.
My mother, who has fiercely opposed social media in the past, regularly sends wonderful notes like this. Little tidbits that brighten my day. She has also joined instagram after a bit of coaxing from me because I knew she'd love the connection that only visual imagery can provide. She's even gotten the hang of using clever little hashtags in the most appropriate places. #toldyousomom.
My mother. A regular social media maven.
The other day, she sent me a message: Hi Nic, there’s an article in the paper titled An Underground Affair. I think you’ll find it interesting.
She was right. I did find it interesting and I probably would have missed it entirely if she hadn’t pointed it out. If she hadn’t known me so well. But that’s one of the things I really love about her. I’ll casually mention that I need slivered almonds for a recipe I want to create and all of a sudden the next day, she’ll bring some over. Or she drops by with yellow apples and sun-ripened peaches just because she knows the children love them.
Nikolas had a terrible stomach bug last week and she came over to take care of him while I worked for a few hours. When I was little and not feeling well, my mother’s gentle touch would always make me feel better. The way she pursed her lips together and gently kissed my forehead to check for a fever. She made the best grilled cheese sandwiches and a much-coveted steeped chamomile and honey tea that she’d let me sip from the tip of a spoon. The way she rubbed my belly in gentle, circular motions or the way she read stories and annunciated at just the right spots, making sure her voice was heightened and pitched differently for every character. The way she’d tuck the blanket around me in the most perfect little package leaving me warm and snuggly and feeling deeply loved.
I hope my children feel that way about me.
When I got home that day, Nikolas had finished another round of toast with peanut butter and banana and was humming softly while building a helicopter with his Lego set. Eating. Drinking. Playing. I always feel so much better when signs of health start to resurrect and my spirited children re-emerge. And I knew he spent the day with someone who loved him and took care of him. He napped and read stories and had soup and grilled cheese and soothing tea. He felt snuggly and cozy and deeply loved under a thick, warm blanket that was tucked just perfectly.
My mother, the chef. The storyteller. The texter. The tea-maker. The secret-keeper. The one who always knows exactly what I need, even if it's just a shoulder to lean on. Even if it's just slivered almonds. xo