the cue

ahhhhh GO!

He runs full speed down the hallway in just a diaper.  His run is more of a prance and his blond curls bounce in rhythm to his quick trot.

Smack!  He gets to the end and both hands slap the wall.

When he turns he is all smiles and eye twinkles.

He backs up straight and tall with his back and palms flat against the wall, and pauses to make sure I am ready.

This is my cue.

I snap my arms and legs open toward him.

This is his cue.


He leans forward and with complete trust, rushes down the hall toward me.

His giggle melts me.

I can’t wait for him to get to my embrace.

His curls blow back from his face revealing the gleam of joy in his eye.

He doesn’t slow his pace as he approaches, flinging himself with all his force into me.

There is no fear of hurt.

He trusts me completely.

And in an instant, we are one person.

I wrap him up in me, close my eyes, and fall backwards.

We are one like we were in the beginning.

Our hilarity and tears and mischief are the same.

Time stops, but our merriment does not.

He has buried his face in my neck and wrapped his arms around me.

He is gasping for breath through giggles.

I am filing these feelings away into my heart.

His hair will not always be this soft and silky and blond.

His fingers will not always have the little dimples instead of knuckles.

His feet will not always be round and smooth.

He will not always smell of baby lotion and graham crackers.

He will not always trust me so freely.

Running into his mom’s arms will not always be his first choice.

I lie on my back and release him.

He scoots down and takes my hand and instructs me in his gibberish to sit back up.

Once I am up, he decides to lean in one more time before starting the game again.

Awww Ma Ma!

He hugs me and bends in to touch his nose to mine.

And with a snap, he turns to run back down the hall.

Ahhhh GO!

A blur of giggles, curls, and baby skin goes running from me.

My smile twitches.

And my heart makes a promise to that boy.

I will always be here for you to run back to.  My arms will always snap open for you.  Just give me the cue.

About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.


  1. My heart just melted. And then realized that you are right, and they will not always be so little, and now it hurts a little, too.

  2. missy widener says

    super love. a mama and her boy. there is nothing like it. no.matter.what.

  3. This was a beautiful post that melted my heart. You’re right – our boys will not always be this little or this trusting. But we will always always be there for them. I loved this!

  4. This is one of my absolute favourite games. C does it now, and he’s big enough to really and truly knock me over. Sometimes, right as he’s about to reach me, I cringe a bit and brace myself for the impact. But then I decide I don’t care. He can plow me over and all I will worry about is that I’m there for him to land on.

    • mine too. I cannot have a bad day when he is so happy and wants to have fun with me. His arms? They melt away ANY bad.

  5. I love this game with my little one. I hope they always know we will be there for them with our arms open.

  6. I know what you mean. It’s like they love us with this ferocity that is overwhelming! And the trust… oh my the trust. If they could always and only be around people who deserve that type of trust.

    • these moments are so bittersweet for me. I am sooo glad we are finally “there” after SUCH a long time of the PPD mess, but now I realize I missed so much in my “haze” and he won’t be like this for very long. My heart aches for what I won’t be able to protect him from.

      I have a problem living in the now, rather than grieving over what is not even gone yet.

  7. Oh so sweet, I understand every second of what you just wrote because I have memorized it with my own children, in my own heart.

    • I suddenly know now what my mom meant when I was a child and she would just shake her head and tell me I wouldn’t know until I had my own children.

      It’s so true. There is NOTHING like the love of a mother for her kids.

      Each of his cute little gestures or sweet moments get written on my heart.

      It’s like that line from the Bible in the Nativity scene about Mary storing all these things up in her heart. That. That exactly.

  8. There is nothing like the bond of a mother and son. My son is 5 and still runs into my arms, except now he really can knock me over.

    I might be the only one who notices, but I think he smells like maple syrup. I file that heavenly smell away because I’m sure it will be gone before I know it.

    • Oh this brings me so much joy! He is five? I hope Eddie runs to me like this for as long as possible.

      The bond between mother and son was so very rocky at first for us. It’s finally strong and I am realizing how brief things are in this life.

  9. Awww…and now I’m crying. Lovely post.

  10. Great post. It really is the best feeling ever – watching your son run up to you with his arms wide, crashing into you with a big hug. Awesome.

    • I hope he always does this. ok, maybe not when he is 30…or maybe I do want him to still do it. 🙂

  11. OMG, that was the most Beautiful thing I’ve read all week…WOW. That last line, PERFECTION.

    I could hear those giggles, feel his silky hair, hear you both breathing through the laughter…..

    your words gave my heart a squeeze this morning 🙂

    • Thanks, cheerleader, you.

      Sometimes a squeeze to the heart is what we all need. It melts away the bad.

  12. OH MY SWEETNESS! That is just the best! Don’t make me cry like this at work. 🙂

  13. Beautifully written and makes me want to hold my son forever! I can’t believe how fast our babies grow up…

  14. Beautiful and totally how I feel about my son! I can’t help but just break down sometimes.

  15. I won’t say much because I haven’t cried at all today, and I’m kind of liking that, but yes. 1,000 times yes. I’m so glad you’re open and available to him while he is offering you so very, very much.

    Enjoy him without fear.

    • I love you, Adrienne. I am ALWAYS telling myself to love him without abandon and to quit thinking about how it is fleeting. To just love that moment.

      It’s hard.

      I don’t want him to remember having a sad momma.

  16. That brought me to tears. 🙂 I’m so in love with both my children…

  17. Such fun. Ugh my heart.

    Just spent the day at the zoo with second grade field trip. My son wanted me there, but not too close. Thanks for reminding me to be happy I was invited. Soon I won’t be.


    • the day he wants me to stay out of the “fun”? I will die inside.

      i know it’s coming because I NEVER wanted my parents around, and now I feel bad.

  18. love it – such a sweet time with your boy! those moments are the best!

    • they ARE the best. I need to remember that instead of becoming sad that they are fleeting, I need to enjoy them while they happen.

  19. Oh, honey.

    The only sweet balm we have is that of another mom understanding.

    Things you try and try and STILL you can’t explain what it feels like.

  20. Tina McLarty says

    That does it. This post makes me want to have a boy.

  21. I love that ending. Always being there for our little boys.

  22. This? Beautiful. And totally made me sob. Why do they have to grow so fast 🙁

    • oh no! i don’t want you to sob, momma! But yes, they grow up too damn fast. It’s like a blur. I hate that.

  23. This brought tears to my eyes. My son is 20 and how I miss those days! Please savor every minute now!But, you are right with your promise at the end. He will continue to run back to you and will always need those open arms.

    Suzan’s “Life is Better in a Tiara”

    • Ah! I love this comment. I get afraid of missing this time, but it warms my heart to hear moms who have been throw it say that I am doing the right thing with my little man.

      thank you so much.

  24. I love this post. And you are wise to be filing these moments away, to realize that he won’t always be this boy you have now.

    But the boy you will have will be just as amazing. And I know you know that.

    My son is now 13 (and he’d kill me for sharing this but he won’t know, so there):

    Every night, while he’s climbing into his bunk bed, I say “I love you.” He says, “Wait! I’m not ready to love you yet…” (I know that could sound creepy but bear with me).

    Then he gets settled, pulls his blankets up to his chin, rests his head on the pillow and smiles. “Okay, I’m ready now. And I love you, too.”

    My heart still melts. Every time.

    A bond between a son and his mother? It doesn’t break. It just stretches, shifts and finds a new way to be ready.

    Lucky, lucky Eddie. And you…Much love.

  25. This comment? Made my day. No…it made my WEEK! Thank you, Julie. I so very much hope for that with my son. A 13 year old who will still tell me every night that he loves me.

    And I LOVE this: “A bond between a son and his mother? It doesn’t break. It just stretches, shifts and finds a new way to be ready.”

    Stretching and shifting. I’ll take it.

  26. Happy sighs, friend. Happy, happy sighs.

    There is something about Joshua grabbing onto me and tucking his little toddler face into my neck and breathing there that makes my heart do somersaults just like this happy little game you play with Eddie.

    Being a Boy Mom rocks.

  27. Awww memories like these are priceless! If a kid of mine runs at me like that now I have to brace for impact or I will hit the floor.

  28. There is nothing like the love of a mama for her baby. Nothing. This made my heart smile. Wide. 🙂 Thanks for sharing such a tender moment.

  29. These are great tips for all bloggers!!
    Many of us think we’re doing everything to be user friendly but we may be missing one piece.
    Congrats on being over at BlogHer! Good stuff!