I dreamed that I had been kidnapped by an oddly kind, yet manipulative community of people that lived on a farm. And that I was going to have to live in some sort of metal barn or building, and possibly be an auto mechanic or shuck corn; I’m not really sure. It all gets fuzzy from there. But I remember that in the dream I was able to convince someone to give me one phone call for help. Which sounds like great news....
But then I dreamed that Kid 1 answered my emergency call for help – and I knew I had not only wasted my one chance for rescue, but had just sold my soul to the hostage holding farming community that had big plans for the rest of my life.
Because any mom of teenagers knows that if it’s important to you, it probably won’t be to the kid. And if it’s an emergency, you’ll have to wait till he finishes checking his Snap Chat feed before he even gets up out of the chair to worry. Yet, had I called and said, Hi Sweetie, I’m taking you out for burgers/wings/Sonic tots and a slushie… he would jump into action like nobody’s business.
Not long ago I tried to convince the boys to spend time with me on a Saturday. They were all home and not all booked up with plans or anything. But Saturday time with Mom is less than cool so I finally gave up and went to SteinMart and bought a new bra. By myself. A depression bra, I suppose, a natural reaction to rejection from my offspring.
And picking the boys up the other day after school, I decided I would play their game. I wouldn’t speak until spoken to and even then, I’d give only a one or two syllable response. A grunt really. Barely a sound because that takes up SO MUCH energy. And it got awkward. And one kid finally spit out these exact words, “So, what have you been doing?” Which I totally appreciated because that sentence took breath and courage to get out. Give that kid a medal.
Y’all, I stand before you today, without shame, announcing to the world that I would like my little kids back. Please. I would like the little boys that came into my room each morning to say good morning, the little boys that took naps with me and shared blankets on the couch during TV time. The little boys that said sweet things and asked a million questions because they thought I knew something worth telling. The little boys that hugged and loved me and told me about it without it being teenager uncool.
I miss taking them to fun places and teaching them new things. And I miss holding hands and picking them up when they fell asleep in the car. And I miss the excitement of going to Mothers Day Out – school, as they called it. And I miss just being at home with toys all around and the sounds of Blues Clues in the background.
It didn’t feel perfect back then. It never does when you’re in it. Kind of like when you look back at photos of yourself and wonder why you never noticed how young you looked back then, or how thin, or how, whatever.
Another hindsight is 20/20 story from Kristi Walters, Y’all.
post script… Loving the way it was then doesn’t take away from the love I have for now. But it makes me notice a whole lot more about what I wish I had noticed back then.