During a brief Facebook conversation this morning with an awesome friend that I cherish (thank you, awesome friend), I was reminded that I am not as gentle, loving, caring or as motherly with one of my kids as I ought to be. Which kid is irrelevant; they all deserve that kind of a mother.
Sanctus Real has a song called, Lead Me, that if you have never heard, you need to stop what you are doing and go listen to it, RIGHT NOW. I am not kidding, I will wait.... It will give you a lump in your throat. You know the one. Or it will make you bawl like a three year old, like I did. You know... the "ugly cry". If it doesn't, come on over here and I will smack you in the back of he head for being emotionless. Maybe that will make you cry. Either way, the song will be "sniffling worthy". Disclaimer: You know I am just kidding about the smacking thing, right? I would never do that to you. Unless you stole all my chocolate. Or said mean things about Ronald Reagan. Or hate tea. But I digress...
The song's first verse is about the responsibility a husband has to his wife. I was all ready to tattoo the words on Mr. Clean's forearm (with much self-righteousness) for him to read daily, when the second verse started. To say I was humbled would be an understatement. A puddle on the floor? Probably a MUCH closer description.
I will not quote the entire song as you have already heard it (right? right?!), but this line was the one that was knee buckling,
"Show me you're willing to fight, that I'm still the love of your life".
"Show me you're willing to fight..."
Are we? Parenting is not supposed to be easy, we all know that, we all read the handbook. But fight worthy? I know I fight with my kids (because, some days I am, well... twelve years old), but am I willing to fight for my kids?
I do not mean the "momma bear" kind of fighting, which always seems to be about us anyway, but really fighting for them even when you want to sell them to the circus (please, no comments about how that is insensitive to circus folk, that was a fear of mine as a kid, although my kids would probably welcome it).
"...that I'm still the love of your life"
Kids are GREAT when they are new. Then they grow and have opinions and start to talk and all that messy stuff. Then they get hard. Trust me, I have five of them and they are all hard some days. If your kid is still fresh from the cellophane and still "great", I will just smile knowingly. Get back to me in a few years.
Are we willing to let them know they are the loves of our life when they get hard? When we want to pull our hair out or run away and join a rockabilly band (or is that just me?)? When they do not feel like the loves of our lives anymore? When it is no longer easy?
This was what I heard from that song. And that one little face came to mind. That little face needs me to prove to it that it is still one of the best things that ever happened to me.
Oh and Mr. Clean? I have an appointment already made for you at the local tattoo parlor. I promise, it will just "sting" a little.