Redirecting Myself

"Why do you look so sad?" I asked Trace as we sat on the couch together, my phone glued to my hand. 
He sighed and looked apprehensively at me, I could tell he had been really thinking hard about something. The expression on his face showed a slight inner monologue.
 My boy, so much like his mama. 

"You don't play with me and it makes me sad."

Hot tears instantly poured down my face. I knew this admission was coming at some point, I have been feeling like quite a failure lately. My 'to-do' list has become a form of escapism- and we all know I spend too much time Pinning and on Facebook. It's all an escape. I have been so mindful of keeping myself out of my own head and away from anything having to do with the future. For the moment all I have been able to manage is day to day and even that is extremely tough. I'm exhausted.

I coward next to him, feeling like the worst mom in the world at that moment. He was right, I had made sure to do anything but play with him. I can't stand playing, I am too fidgety to sit on the floor and re-enact monster scenes. It's been my weakness since I was a child. I don't play and I have never been good at it. It truly is a skill one must have. 
Putting my hand on his I looked him in the eyes, his pain was so obvious and it crushed me completely. "I promise you I am doing the very best I can, Trace. Mommy is having a hard time with her feelings and sometimes when that happens I clean too much. Sounds so silly huh?" 

"What if I clean with you? Will you play after?" 
"Forget the cleaning, forget my stupid phone, come on lets go find Fifi and take a walk."
I could have almost heaved my phone into the ocean at that moment. I was so ashamed. 

I have come to the realization that in my efforts to continually better my parenting I somehow missed the biggest piece, not reading, not researching, not planning or writing or list making. It was follow through, I was lacking the proper motivation to follow through with the knowledge I had gained. Thus making every effort almost feel completely pointless. 

We bundled up and placed our little Pixie in her sling, I held each of their hands and we walked without destination. They stopped multiple times to kick mounds of snow or marvel at the trucks driving by. And I soaked up the exact moment I was in. I breathed the air and admired the clouds and once again saw my boy smile. It was a genuine smile, not the kind I have witnessed lately pulled from his all too mature heart. He didn't plaster this smile on for the sake of pleasing those around him, this one was fixed from a state of complete joy. He giggled and ran ahead of me chasing Phoenix down the path. I kept my mouth shut and let them be exactly what they needed for that time being.
We returned exhausted, freezing and stained red at the cheeks. But my house quickly filled with gleeful laughter. Trace took his coat off and helped his little sister out of hers. He looked up at me and said, "Ok mommy, you can clean now if you want." 

So I did, this time a little less guilty. 


ali said...

You're human :) Glad he was able to communicate with you and you were able to spend some time together!


you're a great mom, sometimes kids remind us the things that really matter.

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