i pick up the brush to do her hair and she pushes her glasses back onto her nose.
“mom. i can do it. i will brush my own hair.”
i knock on the bathroom door. i can’t find her. i don’t know where she is.
“mom. i’m going potty.”
i follow her into her bedroom to make sure she picks out her clothes for the day and doesn’t put on her snow pants back on. she pushes the door shut before i make it in.
“leave me alone!”
when a girl is ten, she needs a little space. i think. my girl has down syndrome so she is ten, but she isn’t. sometimes i act like she’s three because she can still act like she’s three. but she’s always ten. so she pushes her door shut in my face when i can’t tell the difference.
i’m failing little by little. every hug is premeditated these days. every kind word a discipline. i have to make myself do it or i’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be done. i’m not liking these three small people i have to care for. i don’t know if it’s the heat or my heart or a combination of both, but basically i suck at being a mom right now.
part of the problem, a large part, okay all of it – is me.
me wanting children to be something other than they are. they’re kids. they’re changing quicker than my brains can process it. i’m alway catching up to where they’re at. physically and emotionally. mentally and spiritually. they take life in leaps and bounds and i’m still changing out winter clothes for summer. i’m slow and lumbering behind their agility, their summer limbs diving into the future. always breaking old records, always before i realize it.
another year. another summer. i hear my voice yelling and what am i really saying?
“stop it! slow down. be just like me. do everything my way!”
i remember sitting in a restaurant with friends who tell the truth. she looked across the table at me and said this ~
“maybe you need to let some of the rope out. you keep them on a tight leash and you need to trust that you’re doing a good job. you need to trust that they are good kids.”
there are reasons for tight leashes and there are reasons for letting the rope out. but there really is no reason not to enjoy my children. this summer. this only summer where he is eight and she is four and she is ten. it’s the only one like it in all of creation and how will i spend it?
better today, i hope, better.