So yesterday I shared with you about my recent pregnancy-related scare. Today when I woke up, I started thinking about what I could do today to maximize my “sitting down” time, thus taking it easier*. MOMD came into the room to say good-bye to me at 6:40, telling me that the weather man was promising rain, rain, with rainy periods. With that cheery news he kissed me goodbye, and suddenly I had the first thought of how to maximize “sitting down” time.
Connor would take himself to the bus stop!
This isn’t the first time he’s done that, there have been instances over this past year where it’s been prudent for us not to go with him. Today though, today it felt different. When I told him that we (Sam, the dog and I) would not be going with him, he asked why. I reminded him that I’m not feeling my best these days, with the baby and all, and he got a concerned look on his face. This wise old voice came out of him and just said, “Oh.”
MOMD & I have created a fairly transparent family. When we are having issues or emotions – dare I say fighting? – we experience the moment exactly where we are. We do not remove ourselves to another room to have “adult discussions”, we do not remove ourselves to resolve the issue either. I read somewhere once that while it is distressing for children to witness their parents arguing, it is more problematic when they don’t see it, and even more troublesome when they do not get to witness the resolution. Children learn that it’s okay to argue, and how to resolve disagreements when they happen, by watching their parents. This resonated for us, and we strive to practice it.
Anyway — so we’re transparent. Which means that Connor and Sam are both aware (as aware as an 8yo and an almost 4yo can be) that this has not been a great time for me. They know I’m tired, that I’m hurting, that I’ve been sick, that I can’t always do all the fun things I like to do with them. So it wasn’t really a shock to Connor I’m sure when I said that we weren’t going to go. And too, it’s not that he’s not ready for the independence – he totally is. In fact he craves it. The look in his eyes this morning though… the concern that flashed across his face… In that moment, I felt awful.
I felt like his face was saying, “Another thing you can’t do? Oh Mom…” I felt like I was letting him down, robbing him of those few moments where I was his parent in the morning. Those final moments where I was caring for him – even from a distance. I felt like he was sad to be dropped from my list of things to do. I said, “I’m sorry buddy… there are going to be a lot of things that I just can’t do in the next few weeks until the baby comes.”
He nodded his head, telling me that he understood. And when we went to the door to see him off, I knew he did. “So Mom – can I take myself to the stop every day from now on,” a big grin on his face? Sure you can buddy, sure you can…
*May I just say how ridiculous it feels to me to say “taking it easier”? I mean, what do I do all day? I take Sam to the park or the drop-in centre, or his Early Years Centre programs; sometimes we run errands; mostly though I’m sitting on the couch or at the kitchen table surfing the web!