by: Michelle Loveless

I took one look at my son and my heart was touched. His hair was brushed to the side.

I don’t think anyone else in the whole world would have caught this little detail, but it meant a lot to me.

My mom, known as ‘Grandma Bonnie’ at our house, had come to watch the kids while my husband and I attended a conference. When we arrived home and walked into a quiet house (a gift!), we discovered a sleepy little Henrick snuggled in Grandma’s lap. The girls had gone to sleep quickly, but Grandma was afraid his persistent calling out would wake them, so she decided to take the opportunity for some sweet time with her grandson.

But even if I hadn’t seen him in her lap when we walked in, I would have known she had been with  him–because because of his hair. If you knew me, or saw Henrick often, you’d know that I go more for a spiky, messy, gelled look than a parted-on-the-side style on my boy. I’m a hair stylist by trade, and I can’t help but want my little guy to be trendy.

So when I see him with his hair brushed to the side, I can immediately feel my mother’s hand on my own forehead as a child. I remember loving it when she would take down my ponytail before bed and gently rub my head. I remember pretending to be asleep when she would check on me at night, and feeling her brush the hair from my face.

When I saw my son, I knew that they had spent sweet moments on the couch while she tried to coax him to sleep while brushing his hair to the side, most likely without even realizing it. Like a mother who finds herself swaying back-and-forth whenever she hears music, even after her little ones are too big to hold.

Tonight, my heart swelled with gratitude for the many nights my mother stroked my hair till I fell asleep. I pray that my hands will trace the same sweet patterns that she has so beautifully modeled for me. I hope that my children will look back and feel as cherished, nurtured, and loved as I do.

Being a mother is a high calling. My mom has feet small enough to fit into a youth-sized sneaker, but they are very big shoes to fill.

Love you, Mom.


Michelle is a regular contributor. She and her family live in Grand Rapids, MI. For more from Michelle, check out her blog, Gilded Burlap.

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