I didn’t mean to cry.
I was stirring dinner and a salty tear or two might have splashed into the soup.
I had just sent all three of my kids to their rooms because, honestly, they were safer there.
One of my kids was so whiny from a sleepover my eye twitched every third word she said, my middle one was following me around making noises and my teen had just hurt my feelings.
I stirred soup and thought about all the things that had gone wrong in the last hour and how I had handled them and I cried.
I looked up and saw my 13-year-old son standing in the doorway.
He didn’t say a word. He walked over and wrapped his arms around me and he hugged me for a long time. He’s nearly six-foot tall, this gangly boy-child of mine, and all I could think was, “He is acting like a man.” And I swallowed the enormous lump in my throat.
He spoke for his siblings and said, “We’re sorry, Mom,” and then he was gone.
I stood in the kitchen and thought about how quickly my perception of my kids gets distorted. I live so upclose to them. I’m their manager, their evaluator, cheerleader and chief overseer. I scrutinize and organize and sometimes forget to realize who they are right now and not just who they are becoming.