See, with children you never can tell. You can skip and jump while announcing “we’re going to the zoo today, hurraaaay!” and your 3-year-old will scowl at you.
“I don’t want to go to the zoo.”
But yesterday you said..? Never mind.
So you try your best to be happy about baking yet another set of muffins. It’s not about the muffins, you tell yourself, it’s about being together. In all honesty though: not really. It’s about the fact that your 3-year-old gets to lick the bowl. And still no smile.
But then suddenly, there it is. You’ve gone out to work for a few hours. It’s Sunday. It’s snowing. Nobody is working, except for you (says that selfpiteous voice in you.) And in choosing to work you’re doing it all wrong, as 3-year-old and Dad wouldn’t mind spending some time with you. In fact, they need to spend time with you. So you come home feeling entirely awful about yourself. Then suddenly your son beams on seeing you. He gives you a non-judgemental, radiant smile. A smile that hasn’t a single worry in the world. He says, “mommy sit halfway the stairs and I’ll run up to meet you.” Which you do. He stands in front of you, cups his two hands around your cheeks. And then puts his arms around your neck. His nose almost touches yours as he goes through those motions again and again, while telling you about what he and Dad did. You sit there halfway the stairs savouring this one particular, unexpected moment. This is the one you won’t forget.