Starbucks Tears

28th November 2010

Yesterday, I almost cried in the Starbucks bathroom.

I know it sounds odd.

But I experienced a moment – one of those that come at you out of nowhere, where you realize just how precious life is.

I was with my four year old, who needed to do some business. As we were coming out of the stall, the larger stall door opened with an elderly woman in a wheelchair, pushed by two women, who I assume were her daughters.

I couldn’t help but watch their reflection in the mirror – they were so loving and gentle with her. They pushed her up to the sink, and pulled up her sleeves, just as I did the same with my daughter.  Almost simultaneously, we helped them with the soap and used our hands to wash theirs. My eyes briefly met her daughters’ eyes in the mirror and we shared a moment – for me, a moment of realization that what they were doing for their mom, and I for my daughter, was all that life is – all that matters.

What I was sharing with my daughter, was a moment that mom must have shared many years before with hers, and now their roles had reversed. Instantly, I saw myself in that mother and her daughters – and it was a very humbling, emotional moment.

In the bathroom.

At Starbucks.

Motherhood can be such an unexpected ride sometimes.

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31 thoughts on “Starbucks Tears

  1. Vicky

    Life goes by so quickly doesn’t it. We’ll close our eyes for a minute and open them to see our children grown. That was so beautiful, thanks for sharing your moment.

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  3. Diana, The Doggy Mommy

    Love this post. I am on the other side, where my parents are old and I am taking care of them. It is the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life. Sadly I get angry and mad at them often. I so want them back. They are supposed to take care of me. 🙁 It breaks my heart beyond belief, I want my Mommy, I want my Daddy. But they are gone. It sucks, big time, but we must give back and try to make a dent in what they did for us.

  4. Loukia

    Maria, this post made me cry, because I totally understand this feeling you are talking about. I get so emotional sometimes, and something as simple as what you described can be so moving and so powerful. Being a mom is the most incredible thing ever.

  5. Melisa

    What a moment and such insight. It also reminded me of an opposite moment my husband and I caught at a restaurant a week or so ago. It was an elderly woman and her daughter or DIL and granddaughter. The way she was spoken to and yelled at was abhorrent…

  6. Elaine

    I was picturing myself in that bathroom in your position and started to tear up. Motherhood is a crazy ride but then so is life. Wow.

    Thanks for sharing your moment with us.. .

  7. Shannon @ AnchorMommy


    I’ve thought about such role reversals recently, as I’ve thought about my parents and in-laws and how they’re aging. It’s a little sad to think about how different things might be in decade or so.

    What beautiful moment–thanks for sharing. 🙂

  8. Kameron

    That is so sweet and so true. It seems like we all start out in life being helpless and then come full circle and rely on others to take care of us again. I only wish I still had my mom to take care of.

  9. Steph B

    It’s incredible how the role turns around. I saw my mom and my aunt take care of my Nana (groceries, cleaning, doctor’s appts), and just let her relax and enjoy life. It really was amazing that they did that.

    I hope my kids are just has loving and amazing to me when I age.


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