I was all set to post tonight about the possibility of reincarnation and communicating with the dead, when something very real brought me back to this realm. My 8-year-old, Zachary, was in rare form tonight and was not his usual, happy self. I know he was bullied by a couple of 4th grade boys a couple of days ago, but he came home tonight and told me that school went fine today, so I didn’t think his attitude had anything to do with bullying. I was giving him and his 2-year-old brother, William, a bath later tonight when Zach busted out with “You don’t do a good enough job trying to be a mom to both of us.” Um, excuse me? Did I just hear that correctly? Wait, let me clean out my ears and repeat that, please. Sure enough, I had heard him correctly. Whoa, I thought. This is huge. And I didn’t really know how to respond. I told him that I tried to do the best that I could and that some days were harder than others (especially now that my husband and I are voluntarily separated – but that’s another post). To which he replied that I didn’t do good enough and then broke out into tears.
I have to admit that I was stunned because I always thought that Zach and I had a good, solid relationship. But, it turns out that he did a really good job of pretending that we did sometimes, and that hurt me deeply. I, of course, told him that I was sorry that he felt that way, and he told me that William always comes first. Ouch, another blow. So, I went into a schpiel about William being younger and needing me more, yadda, yadda, yadda… And I explained how hard it was to work 40 hours a week and then come home and try to be the best mom I could be. And then I looked at him as he continued to cry and realized that those were just excuses for my inadequacies as a mom. Yes, I admit it. Inadequacies. And I realized just how much work I have to do to BE the intentional mother that I haven’t always been. And now I have even more of a reason to continue on my quest to be a better, more purposeful mom. Please, everyone (including Zach), continue to keep me accountable for my mothering. Please and thank you!