As our 6’3”, 270 pound, 17 year old football player sauntered into the kitchen, I placed the final touches on the school lunch which he would inhale later on that day.

“Mom, I just want to thank you so much for making me lunch every day. I know it’s a pain, but it means a lot.”

Whether it was my lack of sleep, morning coffee or a combination of both, tears started to well up in my eyes.

“In fact, I’ve been able to talk a lot about our family. You wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve shared lunch with kids who didn’t have anything to eat. They always tell me they can’t believe I have a mom who gets up every morning and makes me lunch, since their mom would never do that, and I just want to thank you because I really appreciate it.

When our five children were tiny, I think back on the times I prayed I could get through the day with a joyful attitude. A day of success meant that I just made it to the shower before dinner, and honestly, I considered oatmeal in the hair a great beauty product. With multiple toddlers, I took life day by day, knowing my desire to be a good mom, but more importantly, wanting to instill positive character qualities in my little ones.

I certainly didn’t think a decade ahead to an early morning kitchen exchange with my 17 year old boy man that would bless and encourage me, yet also give me a small glimpse into how the day to day, mundane tasks of mothering could literally impact others’ lives and families.

“Really,” I inquired, “kids really take note of your lunch?”
“Yep, you wouldn’t believe it.”

I wiped the tears from my eyes, gave that huge gentle giant an extra big bear hug, and then proceeded to stuff a few more extras into his lunch for the day.

“A little more for you to share, honey. Make a difference.”

As he walked to his car, I peered out the window and saw his lunch bag swinging from the end of his backpack. I thought of all the times I went through the motions of lunch making, wishing I was any place but at the kitchen counter so early in the morning. I admit, I hated making school lunches. It’s still not my favorite thing, but I did it…because sometimes it’s what moms do.

I just never knew. I never knew what a lunch might represent,  but now I do.

My outlook on those sandwiches has changed because I realize it’s more than just the lunch.

I channel my younger mommy days and all my years reading Dr. Seuss.

Sandwiches for him. Sandwiches to share. Sandwiches that make a difference to kids everywhere.

What great lunch ideas do you have to share?

I’m pushing along on the final months and my creative juices have failed me. Also, just to be completely transparent, that same week, another son texted me with definite opinions about how I need to step up the lunch situation, so sometimes those mommy moments are fleeting. BUT, they do happen. 😉

I can’t wait to see what you all are cooking up for Tasty Tuesday.

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