When it's my turn to pull up next and their teachers says they can go they explode at kid lightening speed down the sidewalk. All the way home telling me what they did and wanting to show me their crafts and talking about learning about "butterfries", getting stickers for being smart, knowing the answers, playtime and how they got a turn to be the "leader". Telling me when they got into trouble and why.
And I sit there and choke back tears, pangs of every kind of emotion shooting through my heart. Feeling that little girl inside me crying out to be them. To be in their spot, bright eyed and excited to hear Mommy awe over what they say and be oh so excited by their words. To welcome their personality differences, their energy, their life, their loud childlike craziness. To not hurt them in their fearless abandon and when I do hurt them make it right quickly. To get to experience what they are experiencing. To get to be normal and healthy and nurtured. She begs to be embraced. To be loved. To be accepted.
So I walk up to that door. I hang all the things I am or that I am told I should be on that door. A wife, a mom, quite, calm, submissive, someone who is supposed to fit into a box, less dramatic, less of this, less of that... I hang it all...
I reach down and take a quick breath trying to calm my pounding heart. I open the door and walk inside. It's a big house. An empty cold house. The walls are bare, there are no furnishings or memorabilia or people. And off in one corner stands a little girl. Her head is down, her arms wrapped tightly around herself and the sobs faint. She's scared. Wants to be seen. But scared to make a stir. I walk up to her tears streaming down my face and kneel down in front of her. She looks up at me and I see how beautiful she is and yet she doesn't know it. She thinks she is ugly. Horrid. Not good enough. Her eyes full of tears crying to be listened to, understood, loved, nurtured. I reach out to her grabbing her tight. Holding her like I would never let her go again. I told her she was worth it. I told her she was beautiful. I told her I was going to accept everything different and gloriously wonderful about her. That I was going to listen to her. That nothing was her fault. That who she is is good and wonderful. That she didn't have to fit into a box. That I wanted her to explore and discover. To admire and grow wings. To dream and dream some more and to never stop dreaming. To never settle and to always keep flying higher. I tell her to come with me. That she will be safe. That I will take care of her and help her grow. I will never stop accepting her and if I do I will come running back to say I'm so sorry and try again. That I will never push her to be who she is not or smash down who she was made to be.
I will mother her and nurture her until she is standing as me healthy and oh so strong. All the wounds turned into beautiful scars that mark her as the amazingly beautiful unique person she will have become because of them. And she will be unstoppable.