What is and what should never be

Summer is starting its descent. Camp is over, school is looming, and I’m done with work for the time being. Like on the “fourth day” after a church retreat, I am already feeling the let down, the melancholy, the impermanence of it all. Nothing gold can stay, after all.

I decided to make a little schedule and tell the boys that for the last week of summer, they would be attending camp after all…Camp Mama Bear. G was totally into it and was digging my ideas and also said the “baby bear” would like some input into the activities for the week. We were off to a good start today until game night this evening ended in tears and with both G and I feeling very sad and misunderstood.

Being sensitive, analytical Virgos, schedules and plans are double-edged swords for us. When things aren’t going quite as expected, there is the potential for a freak out (or two). Closing in on age 40, a woman who has taken on an unplanned pregnancy of twins with a fair amount of complications, one would think that I would be able to go with the flow at this point. Unfortunately, sometimes I get so wrapped up in my idea of how it all should be that what actually is can throw me for a loop. And so our game night, and the fun family time that I was sure would ensue, ended because they weren’t into it anymore, no one had good letters left in Scrabble, and they wanted to go play legos.

My reaction should have been OK, good deal, go have fun, but instead I was mad that they didn’t want to play. And I was feeling sorry for myself that I had no better option. I didn’t have someone to go talk to or engage in another game. There wasn’t going to be any fun for me. Just chores. Maybe some time to write later. I was listening to music and putting the dishes away and thinking about how sometimes being a single mom really sucks. How nice it would be to have a partner, someone I loved and could laugh with, someone who I could sit and talk to and play cards with after the boys had gone off to play legos. But I don’t. And then after being told not to touch the music, G turned off what I was listening to and put on what he wanted. I lost it. Doesn’t anyone care what I want??

No. Nor should they really, they are only 9. They care about the next thing in front of them. Who cares about their boring, old mom. And I guess I felt like dammit–I scheduled some fun here and we aren’t having any fun! What the hell?! So stupid to get mad and yell because he turned my music off. But I did. And then he got upset and said things he didn’t mean and it escalated and of course I felt like an awful mother because let’s face it…not the parent of the year to be acting like a three year-old and carrying on because no one listens or cares about the feelings of their way-too-sensitive mom. Ah, the road to hell is paved with the good intentions of a mom trying to create some fun.

Lesson learned. The schedule for Camp Mama Bear will allow for plenty of input from her baby bears. And if they want to do things without me, I will be happy for the time to myself and make the most of it, instead of bemoaning the fact that they are growing up and into independent little men and losing myself in the drama that soon no one will want to hang out with their mom and I’ll be an old, lonely spinster with my cats and my books. We are nearing the end of the big kid years and peering ahead at the tweens. I’m realizing that a whole new set of adventures lie ahead. The question is, will I be able to make the most of it? Or will I continue to fight against what is because of my vision of “supposed to be”? Let’s hope I can be open to possibilities come what may.

when they liked hanging out with me

when they liked hanging out with me

 

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