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The Writing Mother

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Friday, August 12, 2005
Happy Birthday, Batman
Last night I did an unselfish thing but I'm feeling very selfish about it and I know that deep down I did not want to do it. I feel like that child that is forced to say sorry when they really mean "I'll get you when her back is turned".

Today is my son's fourth birthday.

Last night I realized that his dad's sister was in town and his 'other' grandmother was home for the day. So I phoned and offered M. to them for his birthday. They came and picked him up last night and will not drop him back to me until tomorrow. Which means for his whole entire fourth birthday I will not see him or the little blonde hairs on his head. I'm incredibly sad and pitiful feeling at the moment.

I made myself do it though because the alternative was that I would see him for half an hour in the morning and then ship him off to day care. Then I'd see him for 45 minutes at night while I drove him to his dad's house.

Instead he will spend his day being coddled and loved by an aunt and a grandma, he'll go to the circus during the day instead of at 7 pm at night like they had planned so he'll enjoy it more.

But I will not see him today.

I called him this morning and spent five minutes on the phone talking about what he was doing and telling him I loved him and then saying 'bye!' repeatedly in different voices.

I feel jealous of those families that got it right the first time. The ones that are whole and happy and never have to worry about who gets what time with who. Don't get me wrong, my ex and I rarely fight. I would say that it is bizarre but it really isn't. I just know how to pick my battles. Somethings are important to put your foot down about and somethings are not. In the end I try to look at things from my son's point of view. Otherwise I get selfish and want to argue about what *I* want to happen.

I thought about my life four years ago and I know that I'm so much better off and happier now. But nothing will ever come close to August 12th, 2001 in terms of smack-you-in-the-face-life-changing-moments.

I mean I knew I was having a child. I knew that *in theory* it was life changing. But I did not know. Not even a little bit.

If I close my eyes now I can still feel him in my arms for the first time, the slippery howling mass that the nurse uncermoniously flopped upon my chest. I remember my first moment alone with him when he cried and I sang to him. I remember the first time I cried in the hospital room because a sappy song came on about love and I knew at that moment that I would never love anyone as much as my son.

Four years from now he still brings tears to my eyes with his sweetness.

When Major Man and I were dating long distance I would miss him terribly when he was gone. One night after he had left I was sad and began to cry. I let myself cry because M. was occupied in the other room and would probably not see me. But he did, he came into my room in mind-sob and walked over to me. He put his little boy hand on my shoulder and bent down so he could look up into my face. "Do you miss Wandy, mommy?"

He's a perceptive little boy, my son.

I learn more about him every single day. Major Man helps out with that, he's also perceptive and often sees a trait before I do. For example, my son is not a 'toy playing' child. He's not into drawing or building... he is into doing and imagining and acting. He wants to BE the pirate and climb into the spaceship and ride his bike at breakneck speeds.

He's always someone new. "No, I'm Batman, mommy!" "You're right mommy, I AM Spiderman!" "No, mommy I'm just me, you just be mommy." If he had a defining statement at age four it would be "I AM".

So often I just want to scoop him up and smell him and press my face into his. But he's far too busy for that sort of nonsense. So every night before I go to bed I slink into his room to ensure that the covers are properly cocooning him and I press my face to his and smell sweet little breath and the little boy sweat.

I pry the Ninja Turtles or Army Men from his hands and remove the racecars from on his pillow and I kiss him goodnight.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:48 AM

At 9:31 AM, Anonymous K~ said...

Bravo Bat-mom! When M~ is older he will appreciate the unselfishness of your actions.

At 10:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good move mom, and i'm sure it was hard to do. Happy birthday to your batman.


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