I’ve spent the weekend cleaning closets. Purging. Organizing.

In the literal sense of course, but probably in the figurative sense as well. My ex husband used to joke that he knew when something was bothering me, because he’d come home to rooms rearranged or the overpowering smell of bleach and Lysol.

But this weekend’s work focused primarily on my daughter’s closet. I didn’t take a picture of the ‘before’ because, honestly, I just don’t need a producer from Hoarders calling to try to book my adorable 9 year old as an upcoming feature. I adore her—truly, I do—but cleaning out her room was such a chore. She saves everything. Every. Little. Thing. Crammed into nooks, shoved into crannies, pushed under the bed and bulging at the seams, it took an entire evening just to move enough out to start with a clean slate.

I added some shelves and some baskets, gave her some cute organizational pieces and labeled everything. When she came home from her dad’s early this morning, she was surprised. She cried. She said ‘mommy, you’re the most awesome mommy ever.’

But what she loved most was the little piece I picked up at Junque Drawer for her. ‘You are the icing to my cupcake’. For anyone who knows us at all, you know that my girl is a cupcake lover. A cupcake baker. An aspiring Cupcake Wars competitor. She creates her own (questionable) cupcake recipes and sketches them in a notebook. I’d venture to guess that cupcakes replaced sugar plums in her dreams long ago.

The best part, though? When she was hugging me, and thanking me, she whispered ‘I might be the frosting to your cupcake, mommy, but you’re the liner to mine’.

You are the liner to my cupcake.

Coming from anyone else I might have been offended. A liner? Am I really that boring? You don’t even get to eat the liner, for crying out loud; it gets tossed out after the job is done, to be replaced by another. Sure, sometimes they’re spiffy, whimsical and even beautiful; but at their core they are purely utilitarian. The liner is the like the white brief of the lingerie world.

And no woman wants to be the white brief.

But this mother does.

You are the liner to my cupcake. She probably didn’t think this, but what I heard was: you hold me together, you give me structure. You are a given, an necessity, not an optional sprinkle or glitter flourish. You protect me, no matter how crazy I get or how many different phases I go through.  You morph with me, grow with me, help me understand how to be the best cupcake I can be.

At least I hope that’s what she thinks. Regardless of what was going on in her mind when she said it, I’ll take it as long as she wants to say it.

Now on to my own closet….