Mommy said it in one fashion; Daddy in another.
For me, “To the Moon…” began when they were babies in their cribs.
As I brushed my hand along soft cheeks, I would lean over whispering in their ears, “I love you to the Moon and back.” The covers tucked and animals properly arranged, we’d squeeze each other tightly.
As time passed, I’d see their little minds’ wheels spinning and noses crinkled deep in thought.
“Mommy, that’s a long way”, she’d say.
“It is a long way, baby doll. As long as it would take to get there and back, that big wide sky, that’s how long and as much as I’ll love you. Forever.”
“Would we go together?”, he’d ask.
We’ll go everywhere together, pal; for the rest of our lives. You will never be without me and I will never be without you. No matter where you go or what you do, look up at the moon and know that I’m standing under the exact same one loving you.
“I like that, Mommy.”, they both said.
Now, the opportunities to tuck them in are few and far between but I steal them. We still love those quiet moments. And the sleepy hugs…..
Daddy started saying “To the Moon…” when they were about 3 and 5.
When our children were little, The Honeymooners reruns were on at 10:00pm every night just after FOX News. Falling into bed from pure exhaustion as most parents do, Daddy would watch while I read. Something about the slapstick and silly, simple humor (maybe his roaring laughter?) pulled me away from my book. We'd snuggle up close and relished the mindless break from everything.
That’s when, “To the Moon…” became “Dad speak” in just about every frustrating situation one might experience with a rambunctious, gregarious, charming, somewhat naughty three year old.
Let me tell you, Daddy had the move down.
Sometimes, it was “Bang Zoom…To The Moon.” Arm flinging up and out, pointing on the diagonal directly at the moon.
Other times, it was “To the Moon, Matthew!!!”
Matt would giggle saying, “No, Daddy, No!” He'd turn and run leading his Dad in a chase all over the house, up and down the stairs.
I can guarantee, Dad was probably hot about something but he never showed it. Patient man. It became silly fun and whatever the situation, it melted away.
As Matt got older and smarter (smart-alecky-er?), he’d say, “Daddy, you can’t do that.”
Dad would flex his muscle and say straight-faced, “Would you like to try me?”
“Yes!” and the running and laughing and wrestling would begin…again.
Obviously, both ways this phrase was used were meant with extreme affection.
One was a mother’s expression of deep and never ending love for her children. The other was a father’s way to defuse and lighten many stressful and frustrating situations.
We remember “To the Moon, Alice!” quite fondly over here.