When I picked up Isabella from school she was in tears. She buried her head into my chest and from her muffled sounds I could tell she wasn’t upset about her government test. But she didn’t want to talk about it.
We walked to the car and instead of driving home I took us on a little detour. But she still didn’t want to talk about it.
“Anything?” She asked.
“Milk Duds.” She said.
“Milk Duds,” I said with a nod.
She put her no-longer-tiny hand in mine, looked up and me, and said, “Thank you.”
“Do you want to talk about it now?”
“Not yet, but when I do, you’ll be the first person I tell.”
Most days, if I’m being 100% honest, I feel like a failure as a parent.
I make the wrong decisions, I say the wrong things. With three kids there’s always someone rolling her eyes, there’s always someone stomping off in a huff. With two teenagers and a tweenager there is always one who is mad at me, one who is slamming the door, one who is yelling at me.
I often worry that I spend more time nagging and getting upset about all of the shoes in my front hall and lack of lunchboxes on my kitchen counter than I spend nurturing and guiding and teaching them to be grateful and gracious, to be good humans. I often worry that they are going to grow up and only remember all of the times I got upset about them not putting the laundry away, the times I threatened to pull the car over because they wouldn’t stop fighting with each other, the times they lost screens.
But will they remember the milk dud runs in the pouring rain?
My fifth grade girl learned today that it’s sometimes tough to be a fifth grade girl.
But it’s a million times tougher to be a mama.