Thursday, October 9, 2008

Head Games

I always knew that motherhood involved wearing lots of hats. Chef, taxi driver, laundress, etc. are the obvious ones. But I never knew I'd have to don the hat of Psychologist quite so often.

I often find myself saying "I'd hate to go through life with Bridget's head." That little girl can psych herself out ninety-six ways to Sunday. This would be a typical conversation:
"Mommy, what if a big monster came and stomped on our house while I'm sleeping?"
"Sweetie, there is no such thing as monsters, so it wouldn't happen."
"Yes, but what IF??? What if it DID happen?"
"But, it's not GONNA happen, so there is no point in speculating!"
"Yes, but what if it DID happen?"

..... and on, and on, and on..... unfortunately, her worries aren't just limited to the fantasy world.

"What if I miss my swim event?" (like I would EVER let that happen?)
"What if I flunk my test?" (a straight-A student? C'mon!)
"What if the horse bucks me off?" (You will hit the ground. Can't you figure out that one on your own?)
"What if, what if, what if....."

Aidan is a little less silly, but still requires regular Mom Therapy. He was injured several weeks ago and it's been a slow recovery that has impacted his swim training. The first meet of the short course season is this weekend. He is SO WORRIED that the coaches will think he's "slacking" if he doesn't turn in a whole slew of "best times." He's worried he's entered in too many events and won't have the stamina to do well after 4 weeks of abbreviated training. I'm not supposed to "coach" him, so I mumble platitudes and fire off an email to his coaches to make sure they know they've got a head-case on their hands, they promise to talk w/ him at practice.

I can't ever recall being worried about stuff like this before a swim meet.

He worries his hair looks funny. He worries he's not popular. And you know what I am learning? There is nothing I can say to assuage these fears. I try to tell him that everybody thinks they're not as popular as the next kid. He says I'm wrong. I tell him that unless you have serious bed-head, or a mohawk, nobody really notices your hair. He says I'm wrong.

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe everyone notices that I'm overdue for my hair color, haven't plucked my eyebrows or shaved my legs in way too long. Maybe everyone notices the dust bunnies under my bed and the crumbs on the floor near the toaster. If that's true, then everyone notices the empty soda cans and crumbled goldfish littering the floor of my car and the chipped polish on my pinky toe.

OK. Now I'm worried.

1 comment:

Anonymous said... are bringing back memories for me of my own worries...You should save this blog and when your amazing little ones are much much older and have some perspective you should drag it out so they know what an amazing mom you are to even think about them on that level! No wonder they are the little people they are! You are so inspiring! Keep up the great work and keep sharing because it keeps me focused on my own little people and my goals for them!