the kids are just about to turn 6 and 8
I am more in love with them everyday, their jokes, their wit, the way
they hug me when I least expect, but most need it
sometimes I want to ask them if there's things I can do
to be a better mother, a performance appraisal of sorts, but
I'm not thick skinned enough to hear their innocent observations
sincere comments that could stab me deep [so early in the journey of parenthood]
Last week we were about to hop onto our bikes and head to the local pool
when a mom we know from the kids' school walked by our house and said 'wow, you guys are the picture of summer'-- bikes, swim noodles, tanned toes in tattered flip-flops, kids in bathing suits ready to jump into aquatic fun
I was zapped alive by what that mom said
it was as if she secretly knew about the performance appraisal I'd been wanting.
Some days I do nothing but worry that our house isn't clean enough, that there are too many little piles of things that need to be filed, that it's almost 5:47pm and dinner is the last thing on my mind, there are so many shoulds humming through my brain...the reason these things aren't done is because we've opted to go for a long adventure walk, or to satiate my wanderlust we hop on the streetcar to visit a new park, or we cram the day with back to back visits with friends.
I have infused the kids' vocabulary with the word gentle, and the act of gentleness, and the importance of being gentle to people, animals and the planet, but, I realize I am not often gentle with myself. I don't appreciate what I give them, and instead focus on what I'm not giving them.
Today this ends. Today I will start again. A full circle, mentally, emotionally, physically.
I am grateful to that gentle, observant mom, who pointed out our truth; she wasn't judging my dusty shelves or the overflowing laundry bin, she was reminding me to celebrate the beautiful moment I was sharing with my kids.