So yesterday my husband and I were having one of those “intense discussions” that married couples must have from time ot time, and my daughter happened to still be awake despite the lateness of the hour. She hates for either my husband or I to be upset and she almost always chooses to try to cheer us up. So she puts ribbons in my hair, she dances and sings for me, she does a million little things that distract me from the topic at hand and frankly started to annoy me after a while.
At some point in the conversation I turned to her and said, “mommy and daddy really need to talk about this, please stop talking to me.”
What does she do? She mimes by pointing at my lips and pointing at my husbands lips and then making “kissing face” and emphatically waves her arms around. I said, “mommy really doesn’t feel like kissing daddy right now” and her face just deflated. Very quietly she says, “please?”
So I take her in my lap and hold her, and eventually she wanders off to play in her bedroom. And there’s this part of me that just felt awful. I felt awful because I hadn’t wanted her to have to see us upset with each other, because she sincerely tried everything she knew how to try to lighten the situation, because she is little and still thinks that everything can be made better with a kiss like in the movies, because there’s a lot she has yet to learn about how a marriage operates and my husband and I made the decision long ago that we would let our children see us fight but we would always fight fair, so that when they got married they would have a good example to work from.
But… part of me maybe felt like lately we’re not setting the best example.
Yet even so, I look at my daughter and the kind of person she is, and I know that despite every area of my life in which I fall short, in one area I have done really well. Well, I can’t take full credit for her. My husband has done really well, and God himself did spectacularly when he mixed her DNA.
You may think you know everything there is to know about life. Then you have kids. And every single day is a lesson about life, love, patience, tolerance, discovery, anxiety, anger… Every thing you could possibly feel, good and bad, they will teach you to deal with. And the real miracle? When you tuck them in to bed you will kiss them and cry and be grateful that they forced you to feel. You will hate the fact that they will ever grow up and leave you.
It’s just… awe inspiring. Yes. Those are the words.