No, it’s not your typical newsflash of sorts, but my son may be on it tonight! Let me explain…
Last night after my daughter’s drama club pick up, my friend and I had our children playing on the school playground. While several kids were running around getting their energy out after a long day, my dear precious son apparently threw a school playground ball over a tall fence into one of the neighbor’s yards. His friend came to let me know about this terrible offense as my son stood in the middle of the playground frozen looking at me and awaiting my response.
As I confronted my son about this mild but noted felony, he did his usual speechless squirmy non-justifiable quibble that makes me all the more frustrated. I tell him that we will talk about his jail sentence after we leave, so as to not continue the drama…. and I wanted to grab a few more minutes with my dear friend while I could. You know… priorities!
Actually, in all honesty, it was chaotic and I don’t quite remember how it played out. I was more focused on trying to hold on to a fragmented conversation as always with my friend, never ending in a lovely harmonic cadence. “Mom catch up play dates” are always pieces of sharing that look somewhat like a 100 piece puzzle a four year old may put together….both random and some ill fitting glops of the picture that may or may not look remotely similar to the box the puzzle came in. Mothers get that. It’s exhausting to try to complete an idea or an afternoon of sharing where not one topic gets to run to the end of its course…. Always pushing for that finality. Always fighting the good fight to squeeze in just one more thought. They are simply rough edges of nuggets of verbalizations imparting questions and answers and attempts to listen to responses given and desperate struggles to give the other UN-divided attention. Always fails. But we keep trying over and over again.
Mothers. We have the art down. Expectations low, but spirits high. The marathon continues into the next recurring play dates as we strive for completion and never ever get it.
I almost always leave a play date more discombobulated than arriving, and find myself wondering if the blur of it all was fruitful for us moms. Our existence is exactly that. Blurry glimmers of hope to connect and listen to each other as best we can, in the midst of things we cannot control nor have any power over. It’s just how it is. It’s multitasking at its finest degree. Thank God, we all understand this and continue to fight the good fight to endure the battleground of our mom-shared time.
The visual is something like this:
Small row boat with a dozen children and two mothers in a storm in the ocean. Children keep falling into the water in the high seas and the winds are a blowin’. Mothers reach over and over again to grab a child that jumps over board while at times she may need to dive in after them if the waves take them far. Through the wind gusts and the high waves and the torrential downpours, the moms get to “talk and catch up”. Yeah.
Typical play date. Apparently it is enough. Fortunately, it works. Somehow. Someway. Some play dates have harder storms than others. No control, No power. Just the way of the water….
So back to my story:
I later tell my son that he disrespected school property and again attempted to get him to talk about what and why and how…
I decide to be the politically correct mother of the year and hold him accountable for his actions by telling him we will be going to the principal and telling her about his infraction. The school will see fit to his punishment. (Why not? Put it on the school and scare the bageebies out of him!) So on the way to school I remind my delinquent son that he and I will be going to the principal after school to talk about his punishment. He says, “am I going to get kicked out of school mommy?” I respond, “I hope not, but I don’t know. We will see what she says…” (leaving some mystery to the torturing thoughts in the poor boy’s head) It’s quiet in the car now, as we are approaching the school for his drop off. My son says in a shaky quiet voice to himself…
“I hope I’m not on the news”
(Yes, I wanted to pull over unbuckle him and hold him like a baby and rock him and tell him mommy won’t say a thing and it’s okay my little one and don’t you worry, you won’t be on the news!!!)
I said, “I don’t think the news will cover this crime, honey.”