My Outlook on Sandwiches

As our 6’3”, 270 pound, 17 year old football player sauntered into the kitchen,  I placed the final touches on the school lunch which he would inhale later on that day.

“Mom, I just want to thank you so much for making me lunch every day. I know it’s a pain, but it means a lot.”

Whether it was my lack of sleep, morning coffee or a combination of both, tears started to well up in my eyes.

“In fact, I’ve been able to talk a lot about our family. You wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve shared lunch with kids who didn’t have anything to eat. They always tell me they can’t believe I have a mom who gets up every morning and makes me lunch, since their mom would never do that, and I just want to thank you because I really appreciate it.

When our five children were tiny, I think back on the times I prayed I could get through the day with a joyful attitude, and a day of success meant that I just made it to the shower before dinner.  With multiple toddlers, I took life day by day, knowing my desire to be a good mom, but more importantly, wanting to instill positive character qualities in my little ones.

I certainly didn’t think a decade ahead to an early morning kitchen exchange with my 17 year old boy man that would bless and encourage me, yet also give me a small glimpse into how the day to day, mundane tasks of mothering could literally impact others’ lives and families.

“Really,” I inquired, “kids really take note of your lunch?”

“Yep, you wouldn’t believe it.”

I wiped the tears from my eyes, gave that huge gentle giant an extra big bear hug, and then proceeded to stuff a few more extras into his lunch for the day.

“A little more for you to share, honey. Make a difference.”

As he walked to his car, I peered out the window and saw his lunch bag swinging from the end of his backpack. I thought of all the times I went through the motions of lunch making, wishing I was any place but at the kitchen counter so early in the morning.

I never knew. I never knew, but now I do.

My outlook on those sandwiches has changed.

Sandwiches for him. Sandwiches to share. Sandwiches that make a difference to kids everywhere.

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