Saturday, February 22, 2014
a mothers weakness
When i became a mother, i became weak.
I think back to my days before i was a Mom and i can hardly remember them. They hardly made much of an impact. The days when i was a grown up, but not a mother.
What did i even do?
I suppose i actually slept through the night. I bet i could go see movies whenever i wanted. I could go out late and sleep in. Although i never was one for sleeping in.
But until i became a mother--none of that really mattered.
Sure it was life, and i lived it. Not even that fully. But i lived.
And now as i look back i can remember that day, that moment, as if it were yesterday.
This intense love that you can't put into words. A new found fear of any harm coming to this little human. A huge responsibility to be in charge of someones future--their well being. Truly living with your heart outside your body.
It changed me.
In ways i never could have imagined.
Suddenly i thought of my step children. Who were 7 and i panicked at the thought of them eating carrots. I clearly remember that thought going through my mind. Like HOW does a 7 year old eat a carrot and not choke?!? What if they choked?
And i remember watching my cousin hold my new born 5 pound 10 ounce baby girl--in her high heels--and fearing (borderline panicking) that her shoes may break and she would drop my child!!
I remember being in awe of God and amazed that he made our arms just for holding a child.
Those were just my thought that first day in the hospital.
Life was forever changed.
I was a Mom.
And now today, thought the fears have evolved -from fearing someone might choke on a bitter biscuit, to bumping their head on the coffee table when learning to crawl, from falling off a couch, to crashing on their bike--they are always with me.
I'm not the mother to just let my child learn her own lessons. I don't just cling to the assumption that kids are resilient.
I worry. I pray. I worry more. And then I pray even harder.
My 8 year old decided to go to a little church "lock in" if you will, last night.
From 7 pm to 7 am. She was going to be away from me.
And i kind of panicked about it. I anticipated it. I tried to smile. I encouraged.
But in reality i just wanted her to be home with me and never leave.
But i decided i needed to let her "grow up" to experience these things. After all, i do overprotect.
So last night as i drove through the slippery roads to church, with my living and breathing HEART in the back seat, i felt scared.
As i walked into church and looked around at the other rambunctious kids running around with their friends, i held my breath.
We checked in and Ruby looked around for a friend. To which she found none. So we sat on the bench and waited.
Finally her little friend came in and we tried to cling to them. They weren't as worried as we were--obviously.
So as her friend ran off to play with someone else, Ruby quietly turned her face into my body and hid her tears as she whispered "I was afraid this was going to happen..."
I knew what she meant, but didn't know what to do. We can't make people understand our fear. We can't expect them to know we just need someones hand. An offer to come join the fun.
So we sat on the bench.
I had my arm around her, as if to warn the other kids--you mess with her, you mess with me.
So there we sat. Both silently fearing different things.
But smiling at each other--in hopes of protecting them
I tired to joke with her, "Come on--this is lame, lets go home and snuggle forever!" But she only responded with a smile "Moooom, don't say that."
I had a lump in my throat. It snuck up on me---but it was there.
How do people leave their kids. Why is everyone smiling. How do these kids even know each other so well.?
Finally another of Rubys (2 friends) came. And Ruby smiled and they stood together. I took a picture.
And watched as Ruby tried to keep up with her.
Hurting the whole time, i grabbed her and prayed one last time as i wrapped my arms around her.
And then i left.
And i can not confirm or deny if there was weeping and gnashing of teeth in my van as i drove away.
But i can say, it was unexpected.
So off i drove, contemplating life.
Who we are?
Why did i agreed to this?
I evaluated the different types of parents in the world and thought of the differences in their choices.
I know people who leave their kids for weeks at a time and don't bat an eye and then i have friends who can't even let their kids go to a birthday party at an Apple Orchard with out sending her Mom along--for protection.
And you know what? Why wouldn't we want to protect them.?
What some see as neurotic, i see as loving.
I didn't have a kid to just let her learn leassons on her own. Just because she can do something, doesn't mean that she should.
Just because its the "norm" in society doesn't mean its the "norm" for our family.
You can call it a helicopter parent.
I just call it a parent.
I carried those babies in my body--and i will NOT pretend that their pain doesn't hurt me ten times full.
I drove away from the church and called Jeromy and immediately told him that "This is a bad idea. We aren't "those" people. We don't find our identity in being overly involved in things. We don't need to be so involved in the church to profess we love Jesus!!! We can love Jesus while sitting in a heap-together- on the couch...like a little family of raccoons."
Jeromy just quietly agreed, thought i think he was just watching TV as i had a nervous break down.
All i wanted to do was go to bed so i could get back up and see my girl.
Being a mother at home without her child is like being a ship--with out a sea, a bird--without wings, A mother--without her heart.
And i hated it.
So last night, as i woke up every hour on the hour and checked my watch, i anticipated picking her up. I was excited to get her back in my car.
Though i did dream about the Russians again, and it was not a good dream, but in the end i ended up in a foxhole and shot the bad guy. SOooo.....that made for a peaceful night on top of the waking up every hour.
Finally 6:15 came and i got up and headed to the car.
As i drove out of the neighborhood it was so beautiful. So silent. It like i was a part of a secret. And i loved it.
I think i'll do that more often.
I drove on the slippery road and couldn't get to church fast enough.
Finally i arrived, makeup free and in a hat--which tells you how bad i wanted to get there. I feel like if there is anything, there's always time for a little mascara. Amiright.
I got into the church and heard Ruby had fun. But couldn't find Ruby.
And only with in a moment was i able to go into complete internal panic as i looked for her.
Finally someone spotted her --in a heap--in the middle of the floor, covered in her coat, on top of her pillow.
I laughed as i saw her and walked her way.
I talked to her and visited until i realized that she wasn't even talking back so i peaked under her hood only to see tears falling down her little cheeks.
I quickly knelt next to her and whispered "Are you crying cause you are tired or did something happen?"
She managed to whimper that she had a stomach ache so i scooped her up and said "lets get outta here."
In the car ride home. I was silent. Thought i wanted to talk, i knew she wanted the quiet.
I looked back in the rearview mirror to smile at her once in a while.
The ride seemed to take hours.
As we were closer to home, i asked her if she was feeling better now that she was with Mom? And she nodded.
Then i said, "You just need to get home, honey. Everything will be better at home."
And that's when it hit me. That is my montra in life.
We were at Jellystone as a family and all i longed for was home. I was at camp as a kid, and all i longed for was home. I went to college, and all i longed for was home. I went scrappbooking a few weeks ago, and i left after a day, cause "i just wanna get home."
Home truly IS where the heart is. And as long as ours is beating and the kids are happy--that's where we're gonna stay!
Five minutes after walking in the door, my girl was passed out on the couch--and all was right in the world again!! :)