At West Hills’ annual all church retreat this spring (2014), I had the extreme pleasure of sitting next to Erica and Graci Huber during our final meeting together for music and worship sharing. During the songs, I experienced a silent connection via my secret observations of Erica with her 19 year old daughter, Graci.  Graci sat with her legs flung over her mother’s lap. Erica held her lovingly, much in the same way that I often hold my own 7 year old daughter, Taylor.

 

Many times I have asked myself, "how old is too old?" I have wondered at what point it would no longer be appropriate for Taylor to snuggle up so close while I hug her, rock her, and/or hold her tight?  Am I in some way fostering an unhealthy dependence? In a sense, I was asking how much love is too much.

 

In those moments observing Erica with her mostly grown daughter, I had the distinct revelation that my question was absurd. I found a sense of peace with my motherly instincts to hold, nurture, and love. I lost some of the fear around the idea that I might not be doing it right and that somehow my hugs might not foster independence. I concluded that when I grow up, I want to be like Erica and I want Taylor to be like Graci. May she never grow too old to snuggle up in my arms and absorb all of the motherly love that my heart and soul have to offer.

—Sarah Blanchard