She looked back today

My oldest sweet baby started school this year. It’s my first little one to send off into the world alone she’s never been in daycare or preschool this was her first organized classroom. She has struggled a little bit with the structure as she’s always been a free spirit and does as she pleases. I have cried, she has cried, many points we’ve all been crying. And of course being the hovering overprotective mama I am I drop her off at school every single morning. We don’t go to the parent drop off line because she’s just not strong enough in her hands to unbuckle herself from her car seat. She still a bit small and in a five point harness booster. So we park every morning walk across the parking lot and then she crosses as a teacher directs her across the street and walks into school. She only makes one simple request each morning is that I stand at the crosswalk until she gets in the door. So of course I do this every morning but for the last month or so I thought this is sort of silly I just need to go on back to the car and not stand here awkwardly. But today was the day I stood there like always and waited til she walked down and went inside the door but today was the day she stopped looked back, made eye contact with me smiled with confidence that her mother did exactly what she requested out of respect and love and walked into school with confidence. It reassured my standing there every single morning awkwardly and I will continue as requested by my little person. I think sometimes we think the request of our children are just out of sorts and sometimes don’t make sense but her request for me to stay there gave her confidence to walk into school and have a great day. The request she made was important and meant something big to her. I’ve always told my daughter what she has to say is just as important as an adult. Keep listening to the small children and let them know they are important and what they have to say is important because it’s her confidence later on.

Rush. Rush. Rush.

We rush to get to work, rush to get home, rush to get dinner ready, rush to get homework finished, rush to answer the phone or the super important (not really) text or notification. We run place to place with our heads down and brain focused on our next task. But why do we do this? Why don’t we just slow down and take a minute to breath in fresh air? That’s it! You didn’t even notice you have been holding your breath while rushing through life. I do the same exact thing. Rush. So here I am rushing like always to get to a friends house with my family for a family night bonfire. I’m rushing to get my two small children appropriately dressed, rushing to get supplies to take with us and rushing down the stairs to get these things into the van. (That’s right minivan mom here!). As I’m rushing down the stairs I hear my first born crying so I look back quickly to see what could be wrong. As I look back over my shoulder I feel my right heel just barely hanging on to the step and slowly slipping off. And it happens! I slip down that step that leads to that same right heel slipping down 4 more steps. Crashing down on my coccyx and feeling a jolt straight up my low back. I am lying sprawled out half on the stairs half in the floor below the stairs, tears in my eyes from the sudden and intense pain. My sweet sweet first born comes over crying and telling me “my foot hurts mommy”. To which I reply while still sprawled on the floor and tears in my eyes “I am so sorry you are hurting my love”. She realizes maybe something has happened, completely dries up her tears and asks very seriously “Are you ok?” Well I’m a mom so my answer to my sweet first born love will always be “yes”.

But the truth is I was not prepared for that. I was not prepared for a sudden and intensely painful fall. And that is how the past year of my life has went. Hanging on the edge and unprepared for the coming shock. The fall is a very true and recent event but it epitomizes the past year full of unexpected events. New school, hospitalizations, deaths, my own mental struggle, multiple multiple health issues including cancer and dementia in people I love. All I can think very often is well I was not prepared for that!