When I was little, my mom was the most wonderful person in my world. She was pretty and smart, fun and important. She could fix anything and was afraid of nothing. Except snakes. She was my favorite person and I just wanted to be around her. I remember needing to be near her.
Knowing how I felt about my mom when I was a kid, I shouldn't be surprised that my daughters feel the same about me. Beatrice's need to be with me, near me, is palpable. She wants me to see everything she does, tell me everything she thinks, touch every inch of my face and hair, learn everything I'm doing, and know what I think about. She can't get enough of me. It's overwhelming how much she loves me and wants to be with me.
We do a lot together. I'm with her all day, everyday. The only time we're apart is for 2 hours on Tuesdays when I lead a Bible study and on the weekends at church. Lately, my confident, independent girl has been totally freaking out when I leave her. She gets hysterical. I ask her why she's upset and she says, "I never want to be away from you. I never want you to leave me. I need to be with you." She sobs and latches onto me like a baby monkey. She is wrecked.
I simultaneously love and hate this. I love being the mom, the needed one for my little ones. But I hate the freak outs and the meltdowns when I have to do my stuff. I try to nurture and reassure her I will be back, but knowing that her world feels like it's ending when I'm not there is tough. It makes me a bit uncomfortable to know that someone loves me like that, that my existence makes her whole world go round.
Thankfully, I feel the same about her. We get through it together.
Every single day I learn more about how to be these girls' mom. Lately I'm learning that being the mom is not always about feeding and bathing and taking care of them. Sometimes being the mom is just being with them.