Friday, January 17, 2014

Slicing the Apple

Anybody who has been around me or any of my social media within the past 24 hours knows that my son turned eleven months today.  I flood my Facebook and Twitter with pictures recounting this day, along with reflective anecdotes posing the question: HOW HAS THIS MUCH TIME PASSED BY?!

Let's face it.  This time a year ago, I was an unhappy, lost, broken, and very selfish, little pregnant girl.  They say pregnancy'll make you grow up quick -- they're wrong.  Motherhood makes you grow up quick.  Being someone's lifeline makes you grow up quick.

Before I had my baby, my naïveté led me to believe that carrying him around in my belly was difficult.  I kind of thought that part would spurt the whole "coming-of-age" chapter in my life. However, if I'm really honest here, my only act of selflessness throughout the 36 weeks of pregnancy was trying to eat right (ha ha) and avoid anything that could physically harm the life inside of me.


For years, it's been a running joke in my family about my inability to slice and peel an apple.  At sixteen, my mom told me that before I could get my license, I had to be able to slice and peel an apple on my own.  Admittedly, it's a pretty basic skill.  I tried a couple times (okay, once) and did it clumsily enough that my mom was just like, forget it.  The new standard was to be able to do it before I got married.

With this new deadline and my yearning to someday find a husband, I practiced slicing an apple once at my grandmommy's house.  After observing my abhorrent attempt, she took the apple and the knife away from me and said, "Maybe you aren't ready for this."  It then came up a few times during my pregnancy that I still couldn't slice an apple, which is a little deplorable for a mother-to-be.

Grandmommy was right.  I wasn't ready.  I could have given it the ol' college try and actually worked on it.  But I never followed up because a) I didn't really care to, and b) I could really always get someone else to do it for me. 

Back to the present.  Ian and I recently moved into our very first apartment, and with it all my crap came out of storage and into our new home.  Going through my boxes, I found an old apple slicer/peeler contraption that my mom got a hundred years ago (maybe fifteen years ago).  It did all the work for you!  Hooray! I thought.  I can finally feed my child real apples!!!! I quickly ordered my husband to get a bunch of apples from the grocery store.  

the "Back to Basics: Peel Away"
This evening I decided to whip out the apple slicer for my baby's 11-month-old big boy dinner.  It was time for a change from the routine banana.  I stick the apple on the contraption and started turning the...(turning the what? Is that a knob? a handle?  I'm not sure, but surely you can tell what I'm talking about from the picture).  Just as the first of the peeling begins, the apple breaks off.  I didn't screw it on quite well enough.  This led me to what was truly an epiphany for me:  I am a mother.  I need to get a knife and slice this baby up. Without supervision, without aid, without a kitchen tool as a cheat. 

And I did it.  I sliced that Fuji apple. I sliced it realllllll good. I peeled it.  And, if you can believe it, I diced it.  It was a cathartic moment for me.  I felt like supermom.  Oh, bless her, my readers are disdainfully thinking.  The poor girl is celebrating something very pathetic.  

Pathetic as it might be, slicing the apple was symbolic to me.  It showed me just how much I've grown up in the eleven months that my baby has been around.  That 24 pound smiley little chunk has been the driving force I always needed to transform my life and become the woman I need to be.  And for that, I feel indebted to him.

So, thank you, sweet baby boy, for spurring change in Momma's life!  I love you and in one month I fully expect you to dunk your head in your cake!!!
When I was a child I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: 
but when I became a [wo]man, I put away childish things.
1 Cor. 13:11 KJV
Yay! He's reaching for the apple!!

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