Today we had some complications with insurance and orthodontists. The Preacher fixed it because he kept his cool. When I tried to fix it, I broke down crying.
Last year, I changed our insurance policy to save a little money and to simplify things. It covered my preexisting condition, checkups were cheap, and prescriptions were almost free. Barring any ridiculous disasters, I knew we'd be ok.
Then I broke my wrist. By the time I healed, we owed thousands of dollars to hospitals and surgeons. So this year I was a little gun shy about changing the new plan, and I waited and thought about it too long. It was a knot the Preacher had to untangle, and he did.
But I was frustrated, so I cried. (Half the men just left. Sorry about that, fellas.)
The truth is, I keep doing that breakdown thing this week. My emotions are a dead goldfish, bobbing right up to the surface. (And now half the women just left. Sorry, girls. See you tomorrow!)
While the Preacher was solving problems, I was bullying myself. "Why do you always wait? Why can't you make decisions? Your kids deserve better than this. Your kids deserve better than you."
In my frustration, it seemed true enough. Sometimes I wonder whether my kids are better off with me than the Perfect Mom I've imagined for them.
The thing is, when I think about how brilliant my kids are, how special and awesome and ridiculously cool they've always been, I doubt myself. Most days I feel like I'm doing it all wrong.
Much to my dismay, I'm not the Perfect Mom. A lot of the time, I'm struggling. And it's messy. I'm messy.
I know it.
The Preacher knows it,
and so do my kids. For me, that's the spider that bites when I'm least expecting it because they didn't choose to be here with me. They didn't choose to live their childhood under my roof.
And I know they're my kids for a reason, and I'm blessed by God to be their mama. I just wonder why He chose me for this. I feel like I'm flunking this class, and I wonder why they weren't given to some of my friends - the ones who have it all together. (I know they do because I've seen it on Facebook.)
After I calmed down today, I told Little Man I was sorry about the mix-up with his braces. Then I muttered (mostly to myself), "I hope we're doing an ok job with you guys." And my precious son, my firstborn kid the guru, my fiery grace-giver said, "Mommy, you guys do a great job. Don't worry about the braces. You broke your wrist, remember?"
And he hugged me, and I realized he's right. We were on our way to consult with the orthodontist when I broke my wrist last year. Finally, we're on to the next thing.
And he doesn't hold it against me. He says we're doing great. He gives me a hug. He releases me from shame.
To my son, who loves me anyway, I'm enough.
And it makes me think: If my kid, who takes after me just enough to be slightly imperfect, feels that way about his mom, maybe the God who wrote grace into the world is giving me a break, too.
The truth is I didn't want to write this at all tonight because it makes me sound weak and vulnerable and lame. But then I'm working on the vulnerable thing, and it's not really weak or lame to be honest, is it?
The truth is, parents go through this.
We wonder if we're good enough, if we're doing it right, and what I'm learning is this:
Even when it's not perfect, it is enough,
and so are we.
Love covers the rest.
Enough with the bullying,