Entry Fifty Seven- A Cereal Moment

Oprah: …I am thinking back to when I was asked to list my favorite moments from The Oprah Winfrey Show. It wasn’t so much the big shows, the surprises or the famous guests- it was the quiet conversations. And the Cheerios girl is always one of the first to come to mind.

An eleven-year-old girl named Kate and her older brother, Zach, joined me on the show a few months after they’d lost their mother, Kathleen. They told me that prior to her death, their parents decided to spend Kathleen’s last months taking trips together as a family. I asked Kate what her favorite moment from that time had been. Her answer was, for me, a huge Aha.

“One day when I came back from swimming,” Kate told me, “my mom was in bed. She said, ‘Kate, would you get me a bowl of cereal?’ I said, ‘sure.’ Then, one week before she died, I was in my parents’ room. I said, ‘Mom, would you wake me up if you go downstairs to get a bowl of cereal?’ She said she would. So at 2:00 in the morning, we had a bowl of Cheerios together.” The family had been everywhere together, but what stayed with Kate was an everyday intimate moment between a mother and a daughter.

Dr. Perry: That’s a wonderful example of the glue of love. It is in the small moments, when we feel the other person fully present, fully engaged, connected and accepting, that we make the most powerful, enduring bonds.

What Happened to you? Conversations on trauma, resilience, and healing, By Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D. and Oprah WInfrey, Page 81-82

I originally started writing for my daughter, Olivia. I was having (still have) a lot of guilt about the unbalanced time I spend between her and her brother. I know that this blog isn’t appropriate content for a 6 year old, but my hope is that she will read this when she is older and understand. And if she feels that I have treated her inequitably, that she will forgive me.

I do try. I do try to create moments that are just for the two of us.

I LOVE coffee (and wine) but I LOVE coffee. One thing that I really used to enjoy doing on my own was to wake up early and walk the 6km to Starbucks with our dog, Suma. Now that Olivia is older, I have invited her to join me. I will wake her up at 6:30am and with her sometimes still in her pajamas, we will walk to Starbucks.

I beat myself up a lot. I judge myself. But when I read the above excerpt from the book “What Happened To You” I realized that I am doing something right. If the one thing that Kate really appreciated was the moment when her mom woke her up in the middle of the night for a bowl of Cheerios, then hopefully Olivia views our Starbucks mornings the same way. I have created my own version of a “Cereal Moment” with my daughter. This is the one special thing that is ours and only ours. I am really proud of that.

Check out Entry Three- Olivia

Photo Taken June 2021

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