today is not one of those days. today, i let the stress of my day get in the way of my best.
our morning began like any other: the boys joining us eagerly in bed, all of us gathered under the covers waking up to the day, and to each other. it could have been a good day.
we rushed around after and both boys cried as i left for work. not a good start, after all.
work was raw in terrible ways and made me feel connected to a hurt that i’m normally able to protect myself from. one moment (non work related) caught me and haunted me all the way home…
i ran in to the elevator and discovered a young boy in the company of an adult he appeared to know. he was alarmed at my pace and the sound of the door slapping back; interrupted by my untimely entrance. he crouched, terrified of the noise attached to me, and sunk back to no one who had a hand outreached. he did not warm to my apology or affectionate smile and he kept his eyes downcast. he was too young to know fear.
i exited the elevator as fast as i burst on and looked back a moment to late. the door closed on his brown, nervous, eyes and i missed my chance to smile at him and send some kindness and support his way.
harassed by too much to do in an impossible amount of time, i got home late and missed my chance at offering my boys the exaggerated kindness that they too deserved. instead, i rushed some more. i was quick to become frustrated. i yelled some.
tonight, both boys now sleeping and hopefully not having nightmares of their mother’s grouchy-scary voice, a memory of a morning earlier this fall came to me. a morning when the day started better and kept on that way.
we were out the door riding bikes by 730- fresh whole food yum in their bellies, cozy fleece hugging them warm, helmets accessorizing bike and bike seats purchased just for them (it’s all for them) and the smell of autumn leaves heavy and thick around us.
my big boy zoomed up ahead on his two wheeler- both proud at his ability and thrilled with his speed- and called for my praise: “i’m so fast mom, look at me mom, look at me go!!!!”. and, in that moment with wind in his face and support at his back, he found reason to shout at the top of his capacity that he loved me. his voice, stretched and delirious with life, carried forward and then back to me: “i love you momma! i love you like craaaaazzzeee”.
i, of course, shouted my love back- as super loud and immense as i could.
his eyes were forward facing. he did not look tentative. he looked glorious: secure, confident, and connected deeply to the moment and his mother; his primary companion. my baby bounced in glee, squealed at the rush of speed himself, looked back at me and got a forever kiss on his forehead. it took my breath away in the moment and it calls me to attention in the same way now.
we all know that that’s the only kind of shouting i should be doing.
by all guesses, elevator boy doesn’t get a lot of loud love. that’s not fair. and, despite my boys getting more than their share, it wasn’t fair that i bristled tonight; that i brought my edge home and in to their faces.
tomorrow, they’ll get it good. some for them, and little some for him too, wherever he is.