February hasn't been kind to us. We've spent the past 10 days battling the stomach bug and the weather and perhaps had a little too much 'togetherness.' So, I wasn't my best when school was canceled yesterday. I was tired and frustrated and what I really needed was a break...from everything. But we made the best of it, you and I. There was tent making and movie watching and popcorn eating and cookie baking.
As a stay at home mom I often feel conflicted, like I should lead the charge for these things and orchestrate the ultimate stay at home day. But yesterday I didn't. I tried to get you to work together and make your own tent, decide amongst yourselves on a movie and pick a recipe for baking and start pulling out ingredients. Part of me felt like like a 'bad mom' for pushing you away--but part of me really didn't.
You see, by the time I was the age of you older kids, my parents had already divorced. My mother was not just working, but taking every shift of overtime, and sometimes a second job to keep our family afloat. While I remember snow days of tent building and movie watching, it wasn't some sort of parent led activity. It was just my brothers and I playing, learning, fighting, getting bored, operating the oven, watching inappropriate TV and working through it.
Most of my childhood I wouldn't want to replicate for you kids, I had more responsibility at a young age than perhaps I should have. Less parental supervision. I had to fuddle my way through homework, watched too much Oprah in grade school. But there was good in that, too. I learned to keep going, to work hard, to depend on myself. I gained confidence. And I want all those things for you guys, too. But sometimes I don't know how to go about it, I don't have a 'nomal' family history to reference.
So please don't ever think I don't want to be involved. Sometimes I just need a break, and I know you can benefit from a break from me. And sometimes I love to see what you come up with on your own. I love to see you work together, build off each others ideas, and come up with solutions I never would have dreamed of. I love to see you work through mistakes, because I know how handy that will be. Chances are good you'll keep making them. And I hope that you always have the confidence to get back up and try again. And know that I will always be here cheering you on.
I'm joining in the Letters To Our Children blog circle at Everyday Eye Candy.
Please head over to A Well Heeled Woman to see the next letter in the series!