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Mental Health Report

My firstborn son brought home his very first worksheet from school today. He correctly circled all the items he might need for school and then chose his favorite color (blue). I studied the shaky circles and thought about how much he really does love the color blue — and then I cried.

Why? Don’t ask me. I freely admit that I’m just a few coping mechanisms away from a padded room. But honestly, I think I was justified. My miracle boy is growing up so fast, and I haven’t had the time or energy to coddle and spoil him nearly as much as I would like. The worksheet is a tangible sign that my days of receiving unconditional love and adoration — along with instant forgiveness for my many motherly mis-steps — may be coming to an end very soon.

This mothering thing is so much more complicated than I thought. I say, “Hurry up, Jack! Find your shoes. Get in your seat and do the buckles yourself. Let’s go! Let’s go! Let’s go!” Only to turn around and beg, “Give me a hug! Can I have a kiss? Don’t you want to sit in mommy’s lap? Can I help you with your buttons?”

I’m constantly of two minds — prepping and pushing my little bird out of the nest one moment, and crying for him not to fly too far the next. Cataloging his smiles and filing them away in my treasure trove of remembrances. Swearing I’ll never forget just how his fingers feel in mine on this particular August day, at this particular point in his 4 and half year old life.

I’d love to share more, but you’ll have to excuse me. I need to sneak into Jack’s room and watch him sleep.

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Posted in Family & Relationships, Kids, Parenting.


8 Responses

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  1. Amy Burke Sherer says

    If it makes you feel any better my oldest is almost 11 and she still offers me unconditional forgiveness and understanding for my little “slip ups”. The other day I had her at the dr.’s office and she felt awful, where did she sit……all wadded up in my lap. We must have been a sight, she is almost as tall as me so it was legs hanging everywhere. Just love him and he’ll love you right back in the way you need him to, for a long time. (Don’t tell anyone about the Dr., that might embarrass her :)

  2. bells says

    I was just talking to my sister about this this morning. her five year old son is still all cuddles and love and cuteness (he just proposed to her!) but she knows it’s all going to be over soon enough and he’ll be a teenager. So she has decided to try very hard to just live in the now and enjoy it all for what it is. I imagine that’s so much harder when there are four of the little darlings. Still, think of it this way – you get four opportunities at having all that fun and love – four opportunities to watch them sleep. How lovely.

  3. Regina Adkins says

    Don’t cry too soon. April (who will always be baby girl to me) still wants to hold hands to cross streets, and even busy parking lots. She is 26.

  4. jodi says

    Hilarious! I’ll dry my tears for a few more years then, Gina. :)

  5. jodi says

    You’re right, bells. I’ll just focus on counting my blessings instead of focusing on how fleeting they might be. :)

  6. jodi says

    Oh, that is so sweet!! I hope my boys are the same way for as long as possible, Amy.

  7. Tamara says

    Ok, I’d seen a few comments from your FB post and was determined not to cry while reading…I was strong until the 2nd to the last paragraph, then YOU GOT ME!!!! That was me at putting Sophia’s hair in pigtails for the 1st time…totally changed her look! BTW, you’re a GREAT mom…they’ll always love you!!! And, so will we!

  8. Kimberly says

    Very beautiful blog…I cried, maybe because I completely understand where you are coming from, as all mothers do. You really should write a book!



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