As tears began streaming down your cheek, I finally realized that I had pushed too hard. It is another late day at school, when I tell you we have to rush to pick up your little brother from pre-k. We pick him up and I decide we are just going home to prepare something quick for dinner. Your tia (aunt) calls and invites us to go to an event that begins in 30 minutes. I agree to go, and walk out of the room to find you in full Darth Vader costume (yes, you are obsessed and I blame your daddy for this). You look up at me excited to finally be at home, be free, outside the school walls that you know ohh so well because mommy just spends way too much time there (the joys of being the child of a teacher). I tell you to change, and to my surprise you immediately follow directions not because I tell you but because tia is just the person you cannot miss the opportunity to see. I help you put your shirt on, quickly point out where your shoes are and now I ask for your glasses.
Oh your glasses, who are nowhere to be found. They have disappeared and of course you notice my level of frustration. You feel it to your core, you begin crying and demanding your little brother to help you (in a i-am-going-to-push-you-until-you-find-my-glasses). I hear the argument and rush to see that even though your little brother often has the detective skills of Sherlock Holmes at finding things in this house, there is no success.
I do not know why but I am still positive that we are going to be able to drive across town in less than 15 minutes. I try to rush you and your little brother until finally I stop and look at you. My little boy, emotionally you are drained from your day at school, you have been patient with me waiting until I leave yet another staff meeting, and talk about my other kids to colleagues. I push you. I push you so much you are in tears. You keep saying you need your glasses and guilt overrides all emotions.
I am sorry. You are happy to be home because you can actually play. I ruined a peaceful day for you after all that you are asked to do at school. I am sorry because I allowed myself to fall prey to what I am trying to avoid: being on the ‘go’ day after day, rushing from one place to another, rushing you to the car and rushing you to get off the car time and time again. I am sorry because I know that sometimes there are triggers that upset you and this time that trigger was me.
You are now crying so hard and I know that it will be hard to calm you down, so I silently cry with you. I hug you and tell you mommy is sorry for rushing you. We will find your glasses, eventually, I promise you. I sit you on my lap and once again I realize how fast you are growing, how far you have come. I need to enjoy the perfectly ordinary days because they will be over too soon.
We compromise. You quickly decide to play Ninja Turtles with your brother, and I find your glasses exactly where you said they were not…my room.
Slice of Life #3