My brother and I would often catch my mom staring at us.
We would be playing, dancing, walking or even eating and she would be gazing at us. Now this was never a lost thinking about something look. It was always a freaky ” I’m looking at everything you do ” look.
I never understood.
At any social event I always knew she was watching. She knew what I was doing when. If I was behaving badly, I turned around and sure enough her eyes would grow stern and I changed my track.
I don’t know when it started but I’m sure I noticed it first in my teens and she still does it. This look that made me prickle all over, feeling like I’m the only one in the room and I need to do what I’m doing perfectly, at least how she wants it done.
It felt intrusive and unnecessary. It irritated us. ” We often snapped at her to ” cut it out ” or ” Stop staring ” or if we just stopping what we were doing.
I never understood.
Till one day I read these lines …
‘ My parents watch me constantly. Everything I do fascinates them. It’s like I’m doing it for the first time. The adoration is the same as when I started walking … ‘
I watch my children constantly. It is almost like a guilty pleasure. I write down everything they do, small conversations, disappointments, celebrate the little moments. How I felt, how they smiled, what they ate, how they looked. I never want to forget what I had witnessed and cherished. At social events, if I can’t see them, my ears are listening for their sounds. Every single thing they do is special because for me, these people that I created are doing many of those things for the very first time.
I flew back to all those moments when mom stared. It wasn’t sternness she felt or perfection she desired. It was just her love! Her desire to see us. She watched us to embed those moments into her memories. The fact that she ended up bringing us up with values is a happy coincidence.
So, if you are young and find someone who truly loves you staring at you, be easy on them. You mean the world to them and everything you do is magical to them because for them the fact that you exist makes their life beautiful!
That’s what I’m going to tell my children when they gripe, ” Why is grandma staring at us? ”