Hard Questions

You ask me if I even care about you.

Girl, if only you knew.

There’s a desire to answer quickly, but then I’ll want to erase and revise my words to say something different, better, in this moment you ask this seemingly simple, yet hard question.  

The answer, and all it entails, brings a familiar lump to my throat.

Packed in it is the ever-present worry of whether I’m doing it right. There’s that familiar stranger seated in the back row of my mind asking if I’m sure I’m a good Mom. Whatever that even means.

My mind travels back to those early nights of rocking, feeding, nuzzling. To all of the crying – yours and mine – as we figured out this new dance together.

To sleeping in that chair with you on my chest, so you could breathe better.

The buckets I’ve emptied and sheets I’ve changed when you were sick.

Skinned knees that were kissed and covered with just the right princess bandage.

The grace I give you when I know you’ve had a long day.

The extreme pride I felt for you when you finally went on the potty, ditched the training wheels, tied your shoes, aced that test.

The hurt I feel for you when kids are mean or life isn’t fair.

The times I’ve prayed for you, asking Jesus to watch over you when I can’t.

And the times I’ve prayed for myself, asking the Lord Almighty to give me divine patience for a girl who’s as stubborn and as sensitive as me.

The natural urge I have to protect, defend and nurture you.

The desire to be for you. Always.

You ask me if I even care about you.

Girl, someday I hope you know the full weight of that answer.


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