When Your Child’s Reality Is Much Different Than YoursKatherine Stone
I’m in my office screaming at my computer. Well, not screaming exactly, at least not in the high-pitched, full-throated sense. More like swearing and grumbling and grousing and grinding my teeth down to nubs.
In walks my six-year-old daughter, who is home all week for Winter Break. She marches right up close and plants a sweet kiss on my cheek.
“You can tell when I’m frustrated, can’t you?” I ask, fully disarmed by her.
I go on to explain to her that I can get so overwhelmed with everything I have to do. Writing here, writing there, answering all the emails, trying to fix all the back-end website problems that I don’t understand and doing a lousy job, trying to run a non-profit. It was quite a laundry list of too many things to do, not enough time and woe is me and the like.
“Mom, do you wanna play Bingo with me?”
I couldn’t help but laugh. She heard every word I said about how I’m buried under a multi-tasking avalanche and I feel like I don’t have a spare minute to visit the bathroom and she responded by asking me to come into the family room to play a game, because her reality is, “That’s all well and good, but I want to play with my mom.”
It was an important moment for me. I was reminded that she doesn’t see the world in front of her the way I see mine and that’s a good thing. She doesn’t need to think about stress and demands and how to please everyone, at least not before her time. My children and I have different realities, and sometimes I forget that.
At a moment when I wanted to cry because I was already so behind, I got up. I left my laptop and the emails and the ridiculous stacks of paper that I’m saving for who-knows-what-reason and I went and played Bingo with my daughter.
Three times, in fact.
Katherine Stone writes here at Babble as well as at her own blog on postpartum depression, called Postpartum Progress. You can also follow her on Twitter as she tweets inane things about her day, or learn more about her here.