Stops and StartsMarch 3, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Posted in Lollipop | 18 Comments
Yesterday, Lollipop and I had one of those days. As they say.
She didn’t want to go to school; I told her she had to. She didn’t want her jacket; I told her she needed it. She decided on no hat, then changed her mind (as we were pulling out of the driveway); I told her we weren’t going back. Oh, the tears.
It was more of the same when I picked her up. She didn’t want to nap; I told her to lie down and be quiet. She got into her Matchbox cars; I took them away. She jumped on her bed; I yelled.
Nothing new here. Just a toddler pushing the envelope, her boundaries. And her mother being impatient.
Love Is a Battlefield
Finally: quiet. I had won. But I felt so defeated. Why did we have to battle it out in the first place? Why did I even need to “win”?
There was no time to ruminate. Lollipop had fallen asleep at the time she usually gets up. Of course. If there was even a chance of her being tired at bedtime, I had to wake her. Talk about shallow victories.
I opened her door and peeked in. I saw the disaster she had made. Piles of books. Piles of pajamas. Piles of stuffed puppies wearing pajamas. Anything to avoid sleeping. But no Lollipop. She’s gotten into my closet, I thought, or into my jewelry, the laundry, the linens. I felt myself getting angry all over again.
Then I saw her. A tiny puff of pink tulle tucked into the very corner of her bed. So small. So needy. So mine.
The Sound of Silence
I sat down next to her and rubbed her back, her cheek. She stirred and reached for me, her taffeta Sleeping Beauty dress whispering our apologies to each other. I pulled her close, and we slid to the floor. She laid her head on my chest, carefully adjusted her knees around my pregnant belly. I closed my eyes and let her wispy, pixie hair tickle my nose.
And we sat. Entwined. Together. Quiet. I don’t know how long. Long enough.
Long enough to let the silence say all we needed to say. Long enough for her to express emotions she can’t yet understand. Long enough for me to let go of emotions I know better than to give in to. Long enough.
Then we got up, got Giggles, got the dinner ingredients from the pantry. We got our day going again.
But for that one moment, we stopped. Arguing, battling, pushing. We stopped working against each other.
And we started. We started needing, feeling, fixing. We started over.