There was an afternoon back in May when Madeleine came home from school with the weight of the world on her little shoulders. Nobody likes me at school. Nobody wanted to sit by me at lunch. Nobody wanted to play my game at recess. I've been feeling terrible all day, she cried into my shoulder.
These sort of speeches always hurt my heart. Because even though I'm a hundred percent certain her friends still like her and she didn't suddenly become a social pariah over night, we all come home feeling unloved some days. I knew exactly how she felt. And so I said to her,
Well, everything's going to be okay because you're home now. I gave her a big smile, feeling quite pleased with myself. I knew it was exactly the right thing to say. Only she frowned.
So what if I'm home? Now I just have to do my homework and chores and then feel bored. So what if I'm home?
Now it was my turn to frown. So what if you're home? Don't you know what it means to come home? I asked in disbelief. And then naturally I started singing the theme song to that eighties sitcom, Cheers:
Sometimes you want to go
Where everybody knows your name,
and they're always glad you came.
You wanna be where you can see,
our troubles are all the same
You wanna be where everybody knows
Of course my incredible impromptu solo might have helped a little more than the actual song lyrics in coaxing a smile from her, but nonetheless it worked. She got the message. You are home now. This is where you are safe, appreciated and loved. Where everybody knows your name. I can't think of a better expression of how I want my kids to feel when they walk through our door.
And walk through my front door they finally did, earlier this week. After a three week motherhood hiatus their return was everything I expected: wonderful, loud, messy, overwhelming, and just what I'd been waiting for. But what became crystal clear after only a couple of days is that when you're trying to balance a high risk pregnancy with three rowdy kids, everything else needs to be put on pause. At least for a while. And so I wish you a wonderful rest of the summer and look forward to posting again once our little guy has arrived and the waves have settled.