Monday, May 02, 2011

That's What Moms Do: I'll Be There by Ann Stott

Did you push me in my carriage when I was a baby?

Yes, I took you to the playground and pushed you way up high on the swing.

A young boy shows off his prowess for his mom as he walks along the top of a stone wall. He doesn't even hold her hand as she follows along on the walkway. But he remembers when he was not so independent.

"I dressed you in stripes and fed you squished peas.

When you were a baby, I did lots of things for you.
Now you can do them on your own."

For the boy, his mother's reminiscences are proof of how far he's come since he was just a baby. For Mom, it's also something else, happy memories of that precious time when she was everything to her child--reading him to sleep at night, giving him bubble baths and rocking him to sleep whenever he was tired. But motherhood is more than caretaking; it's also a long exercise in letting go and letting the child grow into a full person.

The boy reaches the end of the wall, and instinctively, his mom reaches out a hand to help him down. But the boy ignores her offer and leaps boldly to the ground, proud of his independence. But then he has a different thought.

"Will you still take care of me when I'm big?"

"I will be there." she says.

Ann Stott 's and Matt Phelan's new I'll Be There (Candlewick Press, 2011) simply summarizes every good mother's promise and prayer, that she will be there whenever her child needs her. With simple, spare language and charming understated watercolor illustrations, this one, the companion book to Stott's and Phelan's popular Always (Candlewick, 2009), celebrates what mothers do and does it well.

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  • What a great book for mother's day! I love the way that books can capture the great relationships between a mother and her child. This reminds me a little of Love You Forever.

    By Blogger Blog, at 8:32 PM  

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