Last night I lay awake for hours worrying about the girls. The actual problems on hand didn’t wake me up, but it was one of those middle-aged woman nights. Once I was awake, that was it for several hours, not matter what remedies (read: drugs) I tried.
And once you are awake there in the dark, you worry. Right now, we have some things to worry about, so I went for it whole hog, imagining terrible scenarios, wrestling my mind back to present, just to end up in another terrible vision of the future.
The thing is, that trust is all well and good when it comes to yourself, but it’s different with your kids. I worked out my feelings about living, dying and all the options in between a long time ago. I came to a uneasy peace with the predicament of living, but a peace nonetheless.
But that got shattered once the girls arrived. The deal that I’m in charge but I can’t control what happens to them (not that I don’t try…) is just mindblowing. Any bargain I might have struck with the universe about myself cannot be expanded to cover them. (And yes, I do understand that the universe is probably not interested in my bargaining, but such a deal calms me enough to function each day.)
Now that they are getting more opinionated and trying out “their way” in the world, I’m seeing how powerless I’m becoming. I have to rework my understanding of trust; in them, in myself, in how life works.
What makes that harder is that, of course, like any mother, I notice the disasters that happen to other people’s children. Other people’s children do make mistakes and get hurt. Other people’s children do end up sadly no matter what is done for them. Bad things happen and may happen to my children. It’s not a done deal that everything will be allright. Not at all.
And when the discussion moves to whether such sad tales are what people “need to do,” or “well, it’s just their life path,” I just blank out. Not acceptable, even if it turns out to be true.
So questions like these are partly why I started this series. Not to get any outside answers, but to try to find a new place of trust and acceptance about all the possibilities out there that frighten me, now that the girls are in viewing distance of adolescence. Not so I can keep myself awake with imagined horror stories, but so that I can put it out of my mind and focus on today. Ack. I’m pinning my hopes on that effort being the best help I can give them.
This post is part of a series of posts on trust, based on the 21-Day Salutes originated by blogger Colleen Wainwright. The intention is to write daily to help shift a habit. Originally, she had been told that it takes 21 days of new behavior to change a habit. She has since found out that it is apparently takes much longer. Oh well….