Reflecting on the past few months, I have new gray hairs. My boys are getting older, adolescence is nigh, and we’re experiencing a change in attitude, testing boundaries, and new developmental stages. Sometimes I find myself wishing Calgon really would take me away.
A few days ago, we had a serious meltdown. More so than every before. The boys were standing on the stairs and there was gnashing of teeth and blows to the face. It was an all out Battle Royale. I stepped in and sent them to their rooms to rest of much of the afternoon. Exhausted and separating myself from the chaos, I sunk to the floor in my bathroom and called my husband on his way to work. We seem to be having more and more of these fits and talks and at times I’m feeling so lost. Lost in a state of feeling I’m no longer connecting with my children, often wondering if they do know I love them as I always say I do.
The events and emotions of the other afternoon have passed and all been forgotten, except for the lingering sound of “I hate you!” coming from my child’s mouth to me for the very first time. I know that truly he does not, but it still pains me that in a moment of overwhelming frustration, he would feel that way. I’ve mulled it over in my mind for this space of time and found myself believing him at times and at others, surely knowing he does not feel that way about me.
This morning as I walked past my desk, which I’ve neglected for the past few days, a box caught my eye. Assuming it to be trash, I swept it up and froze as I extended my arm to toss it out. Adorned in the sweet writing of my children the afternoon we had this explosive fit, it reads:
“I love you
bin I have bin loveing you since I was little”
“We all love you”
“Sorry we use a box”
As I look at these sweet notes and take them in with wet eyes, I believe the apology is all mine. Sorry for wanting to be swept far away from here in extreme moments of need. Sorry for not pulling them into my arms and squeezing them tight more often as they feel irritable and overcome with emotion. Sorry for being less than I know I can be in their times of need.
Truth is I’ve always “bin loveing” them too.