And then I hugged her a little tighter...

May 2, 2013

Because of a crazy RV alarm extravaganza last night, I found myself moving the kids inside the house and sharing a twin bed with Scarlett.  

Scarlett has a night time cough that she can not shake.  Seriously, it is only at night, in the middle of the night.  So last night, sharing a bed, she started hacking up a lung.  Another thing about me, I get really irritated by nighttime coughing.  I know it isn't fair to hold it against the person that is struggling to catch their breath in between hacks, but the sound just gets under my skin and sits there festering until I just have to yell "PLEASE STOP".  I have tried to fight this deep rooted irritation, but I think the combination of consistent hack sound, and knowing that it will take me a good 30 minutes to fall back asleep, just makes me crazy.  (Another hurdle to jump with my sin of choice.)
So, after a good 10 minutes of coughing, back rubbing, drink sipping, and encouraging her to "take a deep breath", I raised my voice above a whisper and said "Scarlett, please please please stop".  The words rushed out of my mouth before I even knew that they were there and the second they left my tongue, I wanted to take them back.  In the dark, her body relaxed and in the saddest voice EVER, she said "I just can't do this".  In that moment she felt like it was her fault, and in the same moment I felt terrible.  Like I should go downstairs and tell Chris to take my spot as cuddle queen.  Like I didn't deserve to have her wanting me, laying there so close.

She turned her back to me and cuddled closer while I whispered "I love you so much" over and over.  I never want my children to be hurt by my words, I never want them to feel like they are burdening me with anything.  I want them to always feel loved and supported, and raising my voice will never make them feel any of those things.  It is so hard as a mother to think before I speak.  I get so easily flustered and in the moment I say what I feel and often times my sympathetic feelings are overrun by my frustrated ones.  I am learning.  Even three years into this journey, I am still learning to respond with grace.

Last night I told Scarlett that she was okay and continued to rub her back until her breathing slowed, soft and melodic, praying for forgiveness and for Gods guidance as I walk the tangled road of raising children.  One humbled step at a time.

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