My daughter drags herself out of the classroom. I can tell the sort of day she has had, by the way she shoves her belongings at me and demands that I help.
Immediately mumma bear in me rises to the fore. I want to know the problem. I want to know exactly what happened. I want to know who’s to blame and how to fix it. I will go in to bat for my girls at the drop of a hat, often without all the facts.
So I start down this path, and in no time, I am at the point of declaring motherly retribution of a grand scale. Then I notice my little one is still hurting. Head hung low, big sighs, grumpy attitude.
When I travelled through a period of sadness and grief, there were people that walked with me through that season. The reason this community that surrounded me was so valuable, is that they didn’t try to fix things.
They held my hand and said “this sucks”. They cried with me, or let me cry all over them. They listened without solutions. They were the light in the dark.
I think of that time as I look at my little girl, and I take a deep breath. I stand down from mumma bear detonation. I scale back my problem solving. I look at her. I hug her. I say “I’m so sorry you’ve had a hard day”.
That’s where you start in any relationship. With acknowledging feelings, being there, and listening.
Sometimes fixing things is necessary, and so often that’s where I want to start. Especially for my girls. But in actual fact the first thing they need is understanding. They need me to start with looking after them.
Mummy retribution can wait, my girl needs me. That’s where I start.
Join me for the journey,