I woke up this morning, off.
My son had to wait for the dryer to finish before he could get dressed for school. The pile of clothing-to-be-folded is just too high of a mountain for him to climb at this point and I didn’t want to risk it spilling out onto the floor (it is currently crammed into a Pack ‘n Play, which serves to only wrinkle everything to the point of needing to be washed again, because this mama don’t iron.)
My daughter went to school with bedhead and sneakers with no socks.
Alex was still scribbling his homework from last night while we drove down to the bus stop. The bus came before he finished, he held back tears and left the half done paper on my front seat.
Asher woke up wet and sobbing into his pillow, embarrassed.
And I, I am just off. It’s a Wednesday. I am approaching mid-way through my busiest month of the year so far, and I have this growing feeling of threads unraveling, things, something important, some parts of myself, something I can’t quite remember, but don’t want to forget, something is off. It’s loosening, falling away.
And so, I just cried.
I can’t remember the last time that I cried. No, honestly, I can’t. Was it really nearly a year ago? That hardly seems possible. Both that the event happened almost a year ago, and that it has been so long since I sat on the gravely ground outside my church and hugged my knees, sobbing. Since I last let anything out.
It’s hard to cry as a mother, when the kids are eating breakfast and Disney Junior is on, but not fully distracting them. It’s hard to cry as a mother, when you are the strength that holds little lives together when someone has just had their hair pulled, or they’ve been served a licking of playground injustice, when their ice cream falls to the parking lot ground or their balloon floats away.
It’s hard to cry as a mother when you can’t even articulate to yourself why you’re crying, only that you’ve finally reached the point of overflow and the tears have to come.
Still, this morning. In the face of the laundry and the to-do list, and the inbox that just won’t stop, with kids just the next room over, I put down my coffee and took off my glasses and just let the tears and snot and sobbing happen.
After a minute or two, a quiet Evaline tiptoed into my bedroom. Her gentle, Mama? only brought a fresh flood.
She doesn’t speak much, my little Evie, but her face. Oh. Her sweet face. She was looking up at me, big blue eyed curiosity and a pouting lower lip. Confused. Sad. Her world somehow not making sense.
I stopped long enough to scoop her up, thinking she would need an explanation, I started to talk and tell her that I’m fine, but she just curled down against my chest and stroked my arm, as if to say, hush.
In the background, Home played on my Pandora station. Settle down, it’ll all be clear… If you feel lost, you can always be found…Just know you’re not alone.
I stood with my two year old, crying again, but dancing around the maze of laundry in my bedroom.
Wordless, catharsis-less, but not alone.
So beautifully, wonderfully, not alone.