Hannah sat at the dinner table tonight quietly eating her salad and perogies. (Honestly, I could stop my blog post right there since this healthy, wellrounded dinner is a first and an event in itself…). She appeared deep in thought. Staring down at her plate as she ate, not chit chatting as she normally does throughout a meal. Suddenly, she put her fork down and looked at me and said, “If I was not me, you would not be you.”
I thought for a moment. Not sure how to respond as I wasn’t sure how literal I should take her comment. Often she makes these statements that must make sense inside her own little head, but they are so obscure, they make little sense to anyone else. Like earlier today when she told me that there never is a tomorrow because when it becomes “tomorrow” it is then “today”. Which if I think hard enough about, I can see what she’s getting at, but my brain REALLY hurts.
I decided to assume Hannah simply meant that if she was not around, I would not be a mom, and therefore, would not be the same kind of person that I am today. (I’d instead be the carefree, well dressed, gym-toned, manicured, showered, money making woman I ONCE was).
So I said nonchalantly, “That’s right Hannah. If you weren’t here I wouldn’t be a mom.”
“NO mommy! That’s not what I meant!” she lamented.
She went on to eloquently say that if she were someone else, I’d also be someone else since I’d have another child who would make me different.
And with that, she ran off, grabbed herself a FudgeTickle and left the room.
But I sat. And pondered. And wondered what had just gone on in her head as she nibbled on her lettuce, cucumber, raisin and carrot salad and potato filled pasta. Was she thinking what the world would be like without her in it? Was she imagining her seat at the dinner table being occupied by another little girl? One maybe with blonde hair, small green eyes, a shy demeanor, and few words? I tried to recall any conversations we may have had that would have sparked these thoughts about her place in the world and in our family and how she effects me.
Nothing. It was just another thought stream that fills her busy mind and keeps her up at night (and quiet at the dinner table).
But, she’s so right (once again). I most definitely would NOT be me, if she was not her. Every ounce of her makes me who I am. I didn’t even know I had so many sides, so many facets of myself until she was born. I had yet to discover many of my passions or find my true voice until I had a reason to use them. Who I was, the core of me changed in an instant.
Being patient only applied to waiting in line.
Being considerate meant returning a phone call.
Being organized meant neatly stacking a pile of papers.
Being protective meant holding an umbrella for a friend in the rain.
Being aware meant knowing when it was time for a drink of wine.
Being passionate applied to my career. And my hobbies.
Craving alone time didn’t exist. Being alone made me lonely.
Being in love was never this deep.
And at the same time,
Being worried meant not wanting to speak in front of a large crowd.
Being tired meant getting up at 5:00 for a Step class.
Being cranky only effected Tim.
Yelling meant I screamed at the dog for peeing in the house.
I was allowed to be lazy.
No one got hurt if I turned my back for a moment.
No one looked for me when I was missing. No one cried if I went out to dinner. No one needed my lap, my arms, my heart and my head all at once and all the time.
She keeps me on my feet. She keeps me laughing until I cry. And crying until I laugh. She keeps me guessing. And second guessing. She makes me think. And rethink.
And now, with THIS girl, I am Me. I have no idea what I’d be like with another child. But I do know this Me would be missing something. It just wouldn’t know what it was.