“Mommy, look what I made for you!” Katie squealed as we were getting ready to leave for school.
I looked down and saw Katie holding two pieces of paper. The first was a thin red strip of paper which she had decorated with orange marker and written Mommy. The second was a much wider strip of pink paper. One side said Mom, and the other side was colored with blue and red marker.
“Do you want to wear them to work?” Katie asked.
I looked at her little face smiling up at me. How could I say no?
She explained that the thin red piece was a bracelet. The thicker piece was for the upper part of my arm.
“It’s like an armband,” I said as Katie taped it around my arm.
“Well, yeah, but I call it an arm-er. Because, you know, it goes on your arm.”
I took the arm-er off once I arrived at work. After all it covered my entire upper arm and crinkled every time I moved. I left the bracelet on, however, and a colleague noticed it so I told her all about Katie that morning.
“Oh, I used to make my dad beaded necklaces and put them on his neck in the morning before he left for work. I’d watch out the window for him to come home and, sure enough, I’d see him holding his coffee mug and lunch box, still wearing my beaded necklace.”
I thought about her words as I settled in to work. I couldn’t get the image of her younger self staring out the window, waiting for her dad. To think after all these years she still remembers him wearing the beaded necklaces.
“Hey, can you tape this on my arm?” I asked a nearby coworker.
I was still wearing my bracelet and arm-er when I arrived at daycare that afternoon to pick Katie up.