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Lisa Belkin

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Moments Your Children Will Never Remember

Posted: 01/27/2012 1:09 pm

Amy Storch and her son Ezra had a messy afternoon yesterday.

As Amy describes it on her blog, amalah.com, the little boy came down with a stomach bug after eating a whole lot of raspberries, and the results were very magenta -- all over Amy, Ezra and the house.

She adds her voice to some already messy times here on HuffPost Parents. Devon Corneal recently listed some of her "grossest moments" in parenting, and I'm betting Amy would find them all very familiar. Then lots of readers began to weigh-in over at the rapidly growingHuffPost Parents page on Facebook. (Warning: reading the comments will make you laugh. Just don't read while you are eating.)

My own most nauseating memory as a parent was when I was delighting my baby boy, lifting him hiiiiigggghhhh above my head and swinging him down faaaasssst -- before I knew that this was the kid who gets motion sickness. He was on the apex, directly above my head, and I had my face turned up toward him, with my mouth wide open in a wheeeeeeeeeee. His mouth suddenly opened pretty wide too. You can guess the rest.

He, naturally has no memory of this. And it's that thought -- about how early memories (and sacrifices) are ours, not theirs -- that most struck me about Amy's post today.

She writes:

As a former child yourself, you probably have at least one memory of a traumatic throwing-up event in your bed or on the floor or all over the backseat of the car. You probably DON'T, however, have any memory of cleaning up the carnage after the fact, because you didn't f#@?king have to. No, you got cleaned up and put to bed and left to wallow in your own snuffly misery with a popsicle while your parents dealt with the rest of it, desperately praying to the Clorox gods that they would escape coming down with it themselves.

Amy calls this realization that "no one was ever going remember that I once did this for them" a moment of "Hideous Soul-Breaking Clarity". But even as she writes it, you know she doesn't mean it. Because it's the things you do for them that they will never remember, and therefore can not ever thank you for, that are some of the richest pieces of parenting.

What were some of yours?