I want to be a good mom… I really do. I wake up each morning thinking about how I can be the mom our three sprouts deserve. I would bet that 90 per cent of my energy, thoughts and time revolve around maintaining, feeding, appropriately clothing, emotionally guarding and effectively preparing our kids for life and its pitfalls. It’s only occasionally that I have to seriously think about whether I am achieving my mothering goals. Today was one of those occasions.
All three of the sprouts had school today, and that means that our littlest was at preschool. She goes two days a week, and we have been thrilled that she loves it as much as she does. She has become more and more excited when she knows she has a school day coming up, and until recently I saw that as a great thing.
“We are helping her spread her wings,” I proudly remarked, softly wiping tears away.
Okay, so I never really said that, and I am not that sentimental about it, yet, but I have noticed her growing and changing the last few months. What I am not sure about is if the growth is an indication of our success as parents, or yet another example of our shortcomings.
Littlest sprout is the funniest person in our house. She is random, and her timing is truly hilarious. I am going to learn a lot from her. About two weeks ago she started meditating during her lunch.
Absolutely true account:
Sitting on her stool, eating lunch, she put her fingers together and closed her eyes.
With long, drawn out hums she started, “Hmmm….I am eating my sandwich…….Hmmmmm……I have nothing to do today……Hmmmm….I wish I was at school today…….Hmmmmm……I’m still humming…….Hmmm…….the end.”
My husband and I, who are often both home for lunch, laughed with and at her for her meditation, but there was a definite twinge of guilt. She is our third, and the first kid who hangs out at home with us at the age of four. When her siblings were her age there was always another kid in the house to play with. Not for her. My hubby and I try. We take turns playing games with her and doing puzzles and going through school work, but we are not children, and we do not provide what only kids can. Endless silliness.
So, I started to schedule more playdates. More outings. More reasons to be distracted from the fact that she misses her brother and sister. It works to keep her from asking incessantly “What am I going to do now?” So, until the phone call from her teacher today, I thought things had gotten better, and she thought I was a good mom.
“Hi, this is Miss Teacher, I am just calling because Littlest Sprout just isn’t herself today. She says her tummy hurts and she is looking like she might just need to cuddle up for a nap at home.”
“Oh, sure,” I compassionately respond with eyebrows of concern, “I can be right there.”
As I head to put on my shoes and bring home my little sweetheart…the phone rings again.
“Um, hi, this is Miss Teacher again, I was just telling Littlest Sprout that you were coming to get her and she said that she wasn’t going home.”
Laughter first and then, “so she doesn’t want to come home, huh? I believe it. Do you need her to come home?” Picturing the temper-tantrum-drag-out.
“No, she isn’t running a fever or anything, but she says that she wants to stay with her friends.”
I hang up laughing at the picture in my head of an ornery four-year-old with hands on her hips refusing to have to go hang out with her parents. She already thinks we are not cool, and we have a really long time to be the last people she wants to hang with.
“She’s happily spreading her wings,” I comment to convince myself. Hmmmmm…..I think I’ll take up mommy meditation….hmmmmm