Thursday, February 24, 2011
It Only Gets Harder
There are moments when my world clashes with the one in which I was raised. Moments that I can see with such clarity what it was like for my Dad and Mom to parent me. It's definitely that full-circle phenomenon you understand only when you become a Mama.
Yesterday, when I got home from work, Daddy told me that you had something to tell me. You wouldn't look at me. I scooped you up and sat you on my lap and gave you time. You melted into me. I just sat and rubbed your back. "Tell me what happened," I kept whispering. "It's OK whatever it is. You have to tell Mama."
Don't be mad at me, you pleaded. Please don't spank me. Your voice barely audible. Please don't be mad at me.
I knew what you had to tell me, that you had wet your pants at daycare and didn't ask for help until a little pointed out your pants were wet. I knew what you had to tell me wasn't the end of the world. It probably wasn't a big deal. Accidents happen, of course, but still, we choose to go down this path by encouraging you to own up to what you did.
As I sat rocking you and fortifying your decision to tell me what happened, my mind flashed to all the instances I could remember where I was in your shoes. Sitting on my Mama's lap, or standing in the kitchen, back against the cupboards, as I tried to find the courage to tell my Dad what I did or was part of.
And it was hard to be the Mama. Trust me. I believe what my Dad always said to me: this is going to be harder on me than it is on you. That has never been truer. You kept saying, please don't be mad at me.
And I kept thinking," how could I ever be?"
Minutes and minutes passed. In a gush you said, Sorry Mama I peed my pants in an accident and I said sorry to you don't be mad at me, and I turned my head because my eyes welled up at the relief and sadness I felt in that moment. We made it through something monumental. Trivial in the grand scheme of things? Absolutely, but monumental nonetheless.
It only gets harder ... being a parent. The bigger you get, the bigger the issues that plague and present in the world you live. I promise you- I will always, always encourage the truth from you. I will push you to face your fears, to admit to wrongdoing, to mend fences, and to be responsible for your own life.
Even if it's harder on me than it is on you.