Monday, March 1, 2010


All my kids had their six-month dental appointments recently. Our dentist's office is great - they schedule everyone at once, and we just sort of commandeer the facility. Six kids in and out in just over 30 minutes - pretty awesome, huh?!

We drove to town in two vehicles, partly because we don't all fit in one car and partly because my oldest son needed his brother to drive him back to campus that afternoon.

When the two oldest boys came back into the busy waiting room from having their teeth cleaned and x-rayed, they gathered their jackets and caps and prepared to depart. Then, they came and stood front of me as if waiting for some final instructions. It took me a moment to realize, these big boys were waiting for hugs! I set aside the magazine I'd been reading, stood up, and embraced each of them. "See you at the end of the week," #1 Son commented as he gave me a big squeeze. Then #2 Son - "Love you, Mom." Finally, my two huge, hulking man children headed out the door and down the highway.

Those hugs left me smiling for the rest of the day. It blessed me to think that these young men wanted to show their mom some affection - even out in public, in a crowded dentist's office. And it blessed me to think what a natural and comfortable thing that had been for both of them - no hesitation, no self-consciousness or embarrassment to pollute a sweet moment.

We've all known teenagers - cool, bored, disengaged teens - who act embarrassed to even be seen with their parents. I can only imagine that for such kids, hugging their parents in public would be a source of near-fatal humiliation! I am so grateful God has kept my sons from the false notions of propriety that keep many of their peers from blessing their parents with a simple but beautiful gift - a genuinely affectionate hug.

If any kids are reading this - to paraphrase an old TV commercial, have you hugged your Mom today?

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