This blog chronicles my life as I try to balance healthy lifestyle habits with my husband's penchant for pizza rolls and my daughter's desire to watch iCarly 8 hours a day. It contains a mostly humorous, kind, and somewhat spiritual look at everyday life and the people who live it.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Things I do for Love

Today I spent the entire day traipsing through poison ivy, swatting at bees, casting a wary eye at the threatening rain clouds, picking “stickers” off my jeans, trying not to breathe the “eau du manure” too deeply, eating a soggy sandwich and drinking warm water, and pasting a permanent, if strained, smile on my face through endless lectures. It was field trip day at my daughter’s school and I was a volunteer.

For the record, I wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere else in the world. I love my daughter and I know that she needed extra support today during this field trip. The one friend she has made in Massachusetts happens to be on vacation this week and my daughter was feeling nervous: who will sit with me on the bus? Who will eat lunch with me? Who will be my partner if we pair up? Who will be my friend today? I also know that I have limited time left for my daughter to be open enough with me, vulnerable enough to actually ask for my help, want my presence, and hold my hand as we hike through mud, horse manure, and leaves.

I am grateful that I was on the field trip today. I got to see my daughter cope with navigating tricky nine-year-old friendships, especially when the teacher did tell the kids to choose a partner and there was an uneven number of girls. I got to sit with her at lunch when she otherwise may have sat alone. I got to hear other girls clamor for her to sit next to them on the bus. I got to see her face light up and the forlorn, lost look be replaced with hopefulness, happiness, and relief. It’s one thing for me to feel lonely, it’s an entirely different thing to see that loneliness reflected in my child. I learned a lot on this field trip, most of it having nothing to do with the life cycle of dairy cows. I learned that my child is resilient. She is human. She is more aware of the social pecking order than I had previously thought. She is more popular than she realizes. She is kind. She is smart. She has a big heart and all she really wants is to have friends to sit with, friends to eat with, a few friends she can count on to choose her when it’s time to pair up.

Wow, she really is her mother’s child…

1 comment:

Deb said...

That was really beautiful. Made me smile and say "Aawh!"