Our darling Olivia has had a few tics over the years. The biggest probably doesn’t even count as a tic since it can be classified as a whole issue all by itself. You know I’m talking about the hair pulling, right? Yeah, that was the biggest and she overcame that one all by herself.
This latest tic, though, is driving me crazy. She bounces and then makes this weird sound in the back of her throat. Sort of a hum crossed with a sound like she’s clearing her throat. As she makes that sound, she’ll jump maybe an inch off the ground, landing with a thump and then making the sound again.
I know she can’t help it and yet I struggle to keep myself from telling her to knock it off. In fact, I sometimes lose the struggle and command, “Stop bouncing!”
Those are not my proudest moments. I’m lucky that she just ignores me, bounces one more time and then goes about her business.
I realize that she’s not bouncing AT me and yet it’s so irritating. I try so hard to remember that she’s probably not even aware that she’s doing it until I tell her to quit it.
I wish I were the type of loving, gentle mother who could just ignore the bouncing, secure in the knowledge that it, too, will stop when she’s ready to let it stop.
Instead, I can be heard from the shower telling her, “Stop bouncing. Stop it, stop it, stop it!”
And in the next breath, I’ll tell Alyssa to not yell at her sister for something she (the sister) can’t help.
Yeah, mother of the freaking year over here.
But you know what? Something Julie said recently on Facebook really resonated with me.
I shared a post about wishing my daughters could see themselves the way I see them.
Julie commented that the reverse is true, that we should try to see ourselves the way our daughters see us.
That right there…it was beautiful.
You see, I have so many faults, I get so cranky and tired and achy and irritable and my kids love me anyway. They seek me out, they want to be near me because, and I honestly believe this is true, my good moments far outweigh my bad ones. The irritation is erased by the hugs. The tiredness is blotted out by the kisses and back scratches.
The “Stop bouncing!” is eclipsed by the “I love you so much.”
They see so much good in me, so much potential to be the mom they need, the mom they deserve. I need to remember that. I need to seek out what they see and let it shine brighter than ever. I need to remember that to them, I’m the best mom in the world, because I’m theirs. I need to live up to what they see when they look at me.