This evening I read my kids some information on the current situation in Ukraine, because I like them to hear messages from me, of which I approve since I know the girls especially are hearing plenty at school… The girls asked good questions and we talked through their questions, thoughts and fears, with what I do know, and shared that there is much about the current and future situation that I do not know.
D says before bed, “Mom, I’m confused. Does this *evolve me? Because I only care about you.”
He was all tucked into bed, and his eyes were heavy, and I think he was honestly eager for sisters and I to get out of his room after an active weekend… So it was not the time for a full speech on being citizens of the world, or history or how we are affected. I told him that yes, we will be involved but we don’t have to talk any more about it right now, and we can all get some sleep.
I thought about the mothers who do not have that luxury right now. The mothers who’s children will not ask if they are involved, because they know too well that they are. Or mothers who can not let their children sleep when they are tired, much less all tucked in in their own warm bed at home. I can not take this for granted.
D’s words also hit me hard in another way. Certainly, there have been many challenges the past 5 years. Only parenting in a pandemic is incredibly humbling. There is a spot light on the aloneness of how I will parent, how I will provide for us through that hardship. There are so many times when I feel so bad at this – so ill-equipped to parent at all, let alone on my own. When D said “because I only care about you” it was such a strong reminder of the role I play in who he is becoming – how to ensure he feels safe, loved, and held. It is heavy. It is an incredible responsibility, but it is also an incredible honor.
I hold that responsibility and honor in my heart tonight. And I hold the mothers around the world who are struggling with their heavy hearts – in the Ukraine, and everywhere in the world where there is sadness, poverty, pain, cruelty, tyranny, or injustice. May we find a way to a better future for our children.