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Finding our way

by Miranda on July 25, 2012

Joshua’s my pioneer child, exploring the wilderness of my heart and patience in a way I think only a firstborn can. Lately, he and I spend more time not understanding each other than we do just getting it. Getting each other. From his birth until now, it’s like we’re always finding our way through this rocky terrain that is us.

My grandfather is nearing 90 and has recently become mostly bed-ridden (but also mostly stubborn) so Mama decided it was time we all paid a visit. We haven’t seen him in three years and  it was time to go again. And he needed to meet his great-granddaughter.

All last week I was nervous. Anxious. Terrified, really. Afraid that the weekend would be one giant fail right on top of another. The week with Joshua had been so rough and I didn’t want to go.

Last week was hard. Super hard. So hard I cried a lot and questioned whether or not I need to call my doctor and throw down a copay for a bottle of pills.

But I knew I had to go. It just had to be done.

So, Friday morning I loaded up the car and we drove to rural south Georgia to visit my family. Just me, Joshua, and Emma making the trek on our own since Dan had to work.

There were some not great moments on the trip. Times when I felt really alone despite being surrounded by family. Times when those days were creeping in on me.

But there were lots of good moments, too. Lots of moments where Joshua and I found our way.

There were lots of stops for peeing and nursing and snacks. He ate chips and pretzels and not real food and I didn’t care. I chose not to worry about what he did or didn’t eat because that was one less thing to stress me out.

(Turns out, that was genius.)

There were lots of compliments on what a sweet and awesome boy he is. And really, he is. Both sweet and awesome.

But the moment my Mama Heart needed happened when I didn’t expect it.

Saturday night, I kissed him goodnight and put him to bed. When I climbed into the bed about 45 minutes later, without saying a word, he rolled toward me, threw his arm over my neck, and just snuggled in.

He found his way to me.

I’ve felt so far away from him at times since Emma’s arrival. Like so much has changed in my relationship with him that I don’t quite recognize it. I feel so inadequate as his mother sometimes.

I laid there breathing him in, holding him while he was so still and calm and half my size and my heart swelled.

In that moment, in that quiet, dark room it was just us. Joshua and me. Together.

My boy got what he needed and so did my heart.

Love.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 story July 25, 2012 at 9:25 pm

My heart needed this post today. I’m so glad you found each other. He’s a good boy and you’re a good mama. Also? You’re a beautiful writer.

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2 Miranda July 27, 2012 at 10:09 am

I’m glad this post was what you needed. And thank you.

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3 Miranda Meyers July 25, 2012 at 9:40 pm

Your last few posts have been exactly what I’ve needed to hear! These last few weeks have been super rough with my 2 year old and sometimes it keeps me sane just hearing I’m not alone in this struggle!!! Your posts are so real, it’s great to read, so thanks!!!!

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4 Miranda July 27, 2012 at 10:10 am

Oh hey look, another Miranda! high-fives to you!

It’s, well, life is rough right now more often than it’s smooth and that’s wearing on us all it seems. But it’s just a season. We’ll get through it.

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5 katery July 26, 2012 at 12:07 pm

louise and i just returned from a trip out west to see my family and i got more snuggling form that little girl than i have in her whole existence, she is not a snuggly baby so it was really awesome for me. i guess since she was away from all her things and people that she was used to she found comfort in just sitting in my lap and hugging, it was so great.

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6 Miranda July 27, 2012 at 10:11 am

Joshua’s love language is touch, but he doesn’t usually snuggle like that. He usually just wants to have some part of his body touching mine and I want to snuggle and breathe him in.

It’s so nice when they find comfort in us. (Until it’s not, and sometimes that happens.)

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7 Carrie July 26, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Oh boy, can I relate. I’m sorry you’re dealing with this, but glad I’m not alone. My son and I have had a very strained relationship since my daughter was born. This peaked when my daughter was eight months old and we were all sick and went on a family vacation (umm, yeah…that was *REALLY* fun…). Basically, Jack decided that he didn’t want his mother again, ever, under any circumstances and it broke my heart! He would yell at me to leave him alone and ask for Daddy. Well, my daughter just turned a year old and in the last couple months I have definitely seen a huge improvement in my relationship with Jack. Not sure if it’s because he’s getting older (he’s a little over 3.5), the baby is getting older and needs me less drastically, or if I’ve just chilled out and as a result everyone else has, too…but whatever it is, I’ll take it!

Thanks for sharing!

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8 Miranda July 27, 2012 at 10:13 am

We have our good days and our very, very bad days. I know it won’t be this way forever and I try to keep telling myself that. Sometimes it works.

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9 John July 27, 2012 at 9:10 am

What a truly beautiful moment.

The other day, I was stressing about work while getting ready in the morning. In short, I was grumpy — and, I’m used to getting out of the shower to find my wife & kids asleep, but the kids were wide awake. So, I changed some diapers and was rushing around when CJ yelled “stop.”

He got a big smile on his face, pointed at me, and said “I want cuddles.”

That put everything back in perspective for just a little while ;-)

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10 Miranda July 27, 2012 at 10:14 am

Kids have a way of doing that whole perspective thing, don’t they?

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11 Katie July 28, 2012 at 6:31 pm

Good grief…this is why we are twins…STILL! I had the SAME late night moment with Eddie when I was flying solo as parent up at the cottage around my family. We had to share a double bed and I crawled in a couple hours after he went to sleep. Even though it was hot and stuffy, he snuggled himself right exactly into the negative space my body left in the bed. My sweet boy.

My momma heart is so happy for your momma heart.

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