I am not superwoman. I am unable to leap tall buildings, although I can jump pretty high if there is a snake or spider in my path. I am unable to see through steel, although I can eavesdrop with great accuracy. I am unable to fly, although I am very flexible thanks to Pilates. I am also unable to be a father when I am a mother. That last one gets me every time.
When Sean died, I tried to be both mother and father to the kids. I bought a fishing license even though I cannot stand fishing, bugs or worms and we all went fishing because that's what Sean used to do. I have always been a guys' girl by being competitive, loving sports and have probably more than my share of testosterone when it comes to a fight. But I am not a dad. I am a mom.
My family and I have just passed the 5 year mark of Sean's suicide. For the very first time, my son unraveled. He simply fell apart with sorrow. When I tried to comfort him, he yelled, "I don't want you. I want my dad."
I would give my kids anything to ease their pain, will fight every battle they need me to fight, will do anything for them; but I cannot give them their father back. I cannot pick up the phone and ask Sean to get over here to console his son. I can't even have one all-out-drag-out-no-holding-back fight over his not being here.
So I did what I know how to do as a mom. I wrapped my arms around Ben even though he cringed away. I told him that I will be here to have his back forever. I told him that I understand whatever emotion he is feeling and that it's okay if he wants to lash out at me. I held him until he stopped crying. I am a mom. That's what moms do.
I may not be his father, but I have never missed a lacrosse game. I may not be his father, but I get--let's say passionate--about hockey. I may not be his father, but I enjoy watching Mythbusters and The World's Dumbest as much as the next guy. I may not be his father, but I am pretty sure I can teach him how to shave when that day comes.
I have given up trying to split myself in two. I am who I am. I am not a dad. I am a mom. Because of my female status, Ben is learning patience while his sister and I shop, get pedicures or become overly emotional. The fact is, Ben has learned many life lessons already at the tender age of 12. I cannot erase Sean's suicide, but I can be the compassionate compass that guides my children forward. After all, that's what moms do.
About Moxie Girl Musings
Moxie Girl Musings is about starting over from square one after tragedy impacted my young family. It's filled with stories of triumph, struggle, snafus, hopes, and dreams. Sometimes there will be features from other writers that I like and every so often I'll include an original short story, but normally I simply write what's on my mind at the time. Welcome to my unfiltered true-life story as I figure out this thing called life. http://www.amberleaeaston.com