My Kid Broke My Face

by - August 16, 2013

I think my kid broke my face.

Maybe.

On Wednesday, we were goofing off, and my kindergartner flung his hard-as-a-bowling-ball head into my nose. I heard a pop or a crack and immediately started bawling - big, ugly cry with tears pouring down. Until they saw the tears, the boys thought I was laughing hysterically and were laughing themselves. Then they saw my tears and were very concerned. I wept, "You aren't careful with me!" I sent them to their rooms so I could wallow in my misery. I have been icing my face off and on for two days and researching nasal drainage versus brain drainage (I'm pretty sure my sinuses just got irritated.)

It's true. Kids aren't careful with their moms, not with their emotions and certainly not with their noses. Until kids see our blood and tears, they really have no concept of being able to hurt us. As my boys grow, their capacity to do injury grows too. I now get statements like, "What is going on with your hair?" and "I don't like you," and "Why are you so mean to me." I also get daily love and tenderness from them, so don't pity me just yet.

When I was in my twenties, it was kind of the cool thing to do to look at my parents and point out their flaws and how I'd been affected by them. I think we all do that for a period of time as we seek to figure out who we are. But in my thirties, I have a new tenderness for my parents. I'm not saying I don't vent and let the naughty words fly on the phone with mom when I've reached my wit's end, but I don't feel entitled to push the blame on her, and if I do, I know I need to apologize. I now feel camaraderie with her. I look at my parents and love them. I love how hard they worked to provide for us and raise us well. I love how they are so eager to spend time with us (and get teary-eyed when we leave) but never pressure us about visiting or our holiday plans.

As I'm growing these little men under my roof, I have a whole new level of vulnerability, a raw tender wound of parenthood that will never close up. I can be so frustrated at the end of day with them and yet still fall asleep smiling over how much of a joy they are to love. In essence, my heart bleeds for my children. It will always do so. I will always desire the best for them and struggle with the fact that I fail them daily. I have become very aware of my own flaws and know that I will mess up my own kids and hope and pray that they know just how much they are adored.

Anyhow, I think my nose will be okay. They pain is going down, and the bridge doesn't seem any larger than it's always been. There are no black eyes, just tenderness. My sweet little boys even asked to kiss it for me last night, which of course makes everything better.

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