I hear a scuffle in the backyard. It sounds like an argument over a beloved toy. Little voices escalate drowning out the peace in the house. I try to ignore the argument hoping the tots will work it out: be little men and settle the dispute maturely. The next thing I know a short person is tugging on my shirt. “Mom, Caden took my bear and he won’t give it back. He says it’s his toy, but you gave it to me for my birthday.”
“Tell Caden, Mommy said to give it back.”
The feeling of defeat left Samuel’s countenance and he bounded into the other room with confidence, “Mom said to give it back to me, NOW!”
My kids learn early that there’s power in my name. Power to return stolen toys or grant a cookie before dinner, power to allow mix-matched shoes to be worn to church on Sunday, or to grant permission for a sleep over. “Mommy said” is the dreaded combination of any offender in our family and the assured victory cry of the offended. “Mommy said” can change everything in an instant. My kids take comfort that I am for them even if they are on the wrong side of “Mommy said.” They know a plea towards me elicits my attention and that even if “Mommy said” causes tears, Mommy still loves.