Monday April 4, 2011
I sat at the keyboard with one ear trained on the little boys in the next room. Armed with their little trays and butter tubs full of Cheerios, they had settled down to watch Reading Rainbow.
I could stand and take three steps and see both of them. I could hear the slightest noise from the next room. They were busy and happy. Surely I could take thirty minutes to get some writing done. I had a deadline, after all.
A few minutes passed with my eyes riveted to the screen, my fingers flying. Then I heard oh-so-close to my ear, “Mama.” No panic, no fear, just “Mama.”
I blinked and looked to my left and my 2 ½ year old looked at me earnestly. “Mama. Come,” he said.
“Is something wrong?” I asked.
“No.” He shook his head. Then he grabbed my hand from the keyboard as he repeated, “Mama. Come.”
He pulled me up, still holding my hand, walking me into the next room. He sat behind his little tray with the Cheerios and stared at the TV, still holding my hand. After a few minutes (probably once he was convinced I was going to stay), he dropped my hand and smiled at me.
That moment is seared in my memory. It was a sobering one, the perfect source for some mom guilt. What was I thinking – ignoring my boys?
It was a bit of a wake-up call. Sometimes they just need Mama – not because something’s wrong, not because they need help … just because.
What better reason to be there for them?
It’s true today, too. Sometimes I get a call – just because. No crisis, no request for funds … just because.
We’ve all dealt with mom guilt. Instead of getting caught in the guilt of the moment, wallow instead in the grace of it. The epiphany that comes can serve to make us better at our mothering, if we let it.
What about you? Can you remember a moment that turned mom guilt into grace?