Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Missing: My Super Powers

I think I’m done with bugs and critters for a while. I’m even starting to bore myself. It’s a great tool for denial though. If you’re busy concentrating on four- and more-legged critters, you’ve much less time for obsessing about more worrisome matters. And lord knows, worrying about problems doesn’t solve them or make them go away. It just gives you a headache.

What I tell myself is that these are just more advanced, more complicated steps in this dance called life. If I don’t twist away, just go with it, lean into the rhythm, I can learn these steps too.

Maybe what I loved about being a mom was the super power. When children are small and get hurt, you can gather them into your arms and kiss it all better. You can hold them close and whisper love into their little ears until the sobbing stops.
You can snuggle them in your lap and read a story to distract them from the harsh realities they’re finding out there in the sandbox and on the school playground.

You taught them about love and honour, and truth and integrity. You sent them out into the world and hoped it would be gentle with them. But the world is not gentle. And you see the bright eyed trust, in those eyes you love more than life itself, replaced by hurt and disillusionment. And why were you not able to protect them? Could it be that you’re not really a superhero? That it was all just a game of make-believe?

I’ve been demoted. I no longer play a lead role in my childrens’ lives. I'm a bit player now. Have to be content with watching helplessly from the sidelines. And when it is good it is very, very good. But when it is not......I can’t fix the hurts anymore; can’t kiss away the tears; can’t scare away the monsters from under the bed. All I can do, while my heart is breaking, is hope they’ll be strong enough to learn from each challenge life tosses their way. And come out stronger on the other side.



I may have sworn off grasshoppers and spiders for a while, but tonight I’ll be collecting another kind of wildlife from the airport. Five year old granddaughter and three year old grandson are coming to visit, along with their darling dad. So if it’s more quiet around here than usual, you’ll understand it’s because I’m off dancing with munchkins.

23 comments:

ancient one said...

Dance Away!! Enjoy your grandchildren and their father! We'll still be here when you get back!

Kelli said...

I think our support system across the blog wires works pretty well don't you? My internet shoulder is here when you need it.
In the meantime, enjoy your time with the little peanuts. I'm sure they are thrilled to visit!

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

SuperGrannie!

jkhenson said...

I love your post, the way you put feelings into words. Have a great time during your visitors! And... there will come a time when my super powers won't work??!

Also, I saw the 5 things spot on the column-what have you done, what more can I do?? I have been working at it, but I like new ideas, as well!! :)

Zanna said...

Molly, you wrote that so well and it would have struck a chord for all us mothers of grown up children. Hope life is a bit easier for you and yours soon. In the meantime enjoy being a granny with the munchkins - that's a feeling all of its own too.

Thimbleanna said...

So beautifully said, Molly. Letting them go and becoming that "bit" player is so hard. Enjoy your grandchildren.

Tanya Brown said...

I think of you now and then, apart from your posts. You're sort of a tangible proof that goodness exists, having soldiered on and nurtured several children while hopping around the country, and now (reading between the lines) helping your in-laws live out their remaining years with kindness and dignity despite their, er, being less than tactful toward you at times. I suppose this is all in a day's work for someone who is, at heart, a good Irish girl. However, I still find it extraordinary.

Your birds have either left the nest or are in the process of flying away. Part of the reason they're able to do this is because of your providing them with a place of safety and security, so they could grow up strong and straight. Unfortunately, this is in contrast to what much of the world is like. Having experienced that, though, perhaps they can in turn create their own little pools of integrity, or carry some of it around to act as a shield.

The roles change, it is true, and transitions can be painful. However, looking from the other side of this fence, a parent is no less valuable simply because one is grown. I no longer need to have my closet checked for monsters, but I often do need to hear a different point of view or learn what others did when they encountered certain forks in the road. Without their thoughts, I would be much the poorer.

Sorry for writing so darned much.

riseoutofme said...

Dance on, Molly, dance on.

And sing with all of your heart.

mjd said...

You might be missing the mom superpowers, but for awhile, grandma superpowers will take their place. Still, watching from the sidelines is indeed difficult. However, I am guessing that you have instilled some strength in your offspring that will help through those difficult times. Take care, Miss Molly, you are in my thoughts.

sMC said...

Hugs Molly ((((((Molly)))))
I know first hand what its like when the big world gets its hands on my loved ones. I always said, I loved, maybe too much, but then found it was like setting them on the edge of the freeway (of life)and saying... right off you go - cross.... but No2 son once said...I'm asking You cause you are always there, not like my friends. So have heart we did the right things. Just roll with the punches.

Stomper Girl said...

Maybe you feel like a bit-player now but maybe you are more like a backbone; I like to hope that the things parents teach and the love they give will support their children in ways they/we don't even fully know.

meggie said...

Oh such a happy thought! Enjoy, with every fibre of your being!

Julie's journey said...

Dance like you would if no one was watching! Enjoy yourself with your family. We will still be here when you come back. Dont be away too long.

Princess Banter said...

I wish... I wish... that I could get my mother to read what you just wrote. Too bad she doesn't really bode well with computers. But I have to say, that was well-expressed and that you definitely have very lucky children :)

Isabelle said...

Oh yes, oh yes, how I understand those feelings! We have the aspiring-actor boyfriend staying at the moment and ... hmm. He's not quite what we had in mind for our beloved daughter... And then there's the depressed SIL - though miracle of miracles, he's been at work for a couple of weeks now. The problems are so much easier to solve when the little ones are still little.

At least you've achieved grannyhood, however, unlike some of us. Have a happy granny time.

eastcoastdweller said...

Tanya said it right:

You may not be the superhero(ine) any more, but You will always be their Mom and now, more than ever, a friend.

eastcoastdweller said...

I'm enjoying Your blog, Molly, and the visits that You have made to mine. May I link You?

tracey petersen said...

As I prepare for my daughter to spend a year away from me, in a country afar, where I cannot share her experience these are the very thoughts that I am having. I have not yet managed to reconcile myself enough to feel settled. I am still in a difficult transition. It doesn't appear that it will become easier though.

debi said...

Ah Molly, beauitfully said. You brought a tear to my eye. Not that long ago my house was spilling over with kids. Now I have just 1 left at home. It is hard some days.It took forever to get used to not peeling a whole bag of taters for dinner. But I do have grandkids and lots of em. Grandma powers are just as great as Moma powers. I have my regrets as a mom, lessons I learned the hard way. As a grandmother I have to say that I am doing a very good job. Got 2 Grandsons comin out this week-end. We paint our rocks and bake cookies and play in the creek and grandpa takes them for rides on the tractor.I never have to scold and I love it.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

That's the best... I know you will have a wonderful time, munchkins are the best.

And Grandmas are super heroines.

It's a step up from the super powers of motherhood.

Have a great time!

Scarlett & V.

Ali Honey said...

Molly we all have a different mix of life experiences.The good the bad and the ugly.The only person we can really do anything about is ourselves...others we can help and guide but when it comes to the crunch others have to make their own way. We can be there, we can love, we can hope. To your own self be true. WE all have to move on.

Aren't you lucky having grandkids to dance with....... Enjoy!

sMC said...

Hi Molly, I have given you The Nice Matters Award. As I consider you a 'truly nice matter'

My float said...

Oh goodness, this is so lovely. I fear that I won't be up to the task of teaching my son all those beautiful qualities, or how to manage disappointment and fear. You seem to have done a wonderful job but it seems very painful to watch from the sidelines. Ths parenting business is much harder than I thought..and mine's only three!!