December 18, 2004

The Invisible Mom

The Artist comes home from school the other day and we have the typical mother-child exchange: How was school? Fine. What did you do? Stuff. Variations on this theme are repeated in most every household.
Her next comment however made me feel like chopped liver.
"Where's Aba? (Hebrew for father). Fridays my dh doesn't work. Still a bit more than three seconds worth of conversation from a munchkin I hadn't seen in several hours would have been nice.
"Hey, don't I count?" I asked.
"You are always here."

My oldest, now 23, once became very upset when, as a kindergartener, she learned that during the day I wasn't sitting right where she had left me awaiting her return like some princess in the fairy tale awaiting her true love. I suppose most children think of themselves like that; the center of their parent's world. In some ways we become background noise, especially if, like me, one is more of a stay-at-home parent. I know that when I was working during the dinner hour it was much harder on the family, even the older ones, and it was even more difficult than it is having their father gone most of their waking hours. They adore him. They need us both. But there is something important about me just being there, for them, if they need me.

Dependable, reliable, there to grab on to in case of need.

Maybe, in some ways, I'm the center of their world.

Posted by Rachel Ann at December 18, 2004 10:47 PM

I needed to read that. It's a good reminder for those times when I'm down and sure that no one really needs me at all.

Posted by: Jordana at December 19, 2004 01:52 AM
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