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Ninja Mom

I try not to take it personally when my kids unload their anger or frustrations on me. I understand that this can be an exasperating world…believe you me, I understand…and I know that I am a safe person against whom to vent. Admittedly, at times, it can be hard not to suffer a ding or two to one’s feelings following a teen or preteen direct attack, but I take my mom job seriously and keep reminding myself that if I am going to establish rules and limits, the kids are going to test them. If I am going to put my foot down and say no to things that advertising and peer pressure relentlessly push them toward, because I feel in the deepest part of my soul that these things are not in their best interest, they are not likely going to simply agree and give in without a fight. After all, as much as it is my job to be the parent, it is their job to know everything already and to riddle me with “you don’t understand”s and “it’s not fair”s. They are just starting to spread their wings…to test their steel.

“Do you want me to detest you?” the Moon recently asked as I enforced a consequence after so many…perhaps, too many…warnings.

“Yes,” I answered without hesitation. “If you detest me in the moment because I am doing something that will be good for you in the long run. Yes. Detest away!”

She did not, of course, then jump into my arms in deep appreciation when I said this. Honestly, I would have wondered what she was plotting, if she had. But…I would like to think that something registered or was at least put aside to register later, behind the eye roll and scowl.

All of this simply makes those moments when they actually do appreciate the role I play in their lives much more satisfying. As fleeting as they may be at times, I can take that satisfaction and gratitude and store them in my soul as sustenance for when I am absorbing their angst and anger.

Right now I can say that my soul was amply replenished during a recent opportunity that came up with the Sun. Details of the situation are not necessary for the moment and would only draw away from the feelings involved…and perhaps sidetrack me into a rant on a whole different subject. Suffice to say, as much as I want my children to learn to handle themselves in all kinds of situations and know that this is necessary because I will not always be on this earth to help them with their battles, I am here now and there are some situations with which they need help because there are adults involved and, as children, they are not in a position to stick up for themselves without crossing lines of respect that should rightly stand. Anyhow, such an opportunity presented itself and I stepped up to bat and presented my argument in a pointed but respectful way in defense of the Sun, who stood sobbing behind me. I was fairly content with how I handled the situation, if perhaps still a bit heated on the inside, as self-restraint will at times leave one. Still, I could not get the image of how broken and despondent the Sun looked as I stepped back out of the scene and fought the urge to completely remove her from the situation. I had done my mom job, and felt I needed to step aside once again.

Later on that day, and after numerous errands and activities, she ran over to me and gave me a huge spontaneous hug. Gone were any traces of disheartenment. She was my vibrant Sun once again.

“Thank you, Mamma,” she said. “You were awesome today. You were Ninja Mom.”

That was all I needed. She knew I had her back and it felt wonderful. I ended up tapping into that wonderful feeling not even 15 minutes later, as I stepped into a room, dodged airborne Playstation remotes, and pulled Little Man off of her amidst screams of “TELL HIM TO STOP KILLING ME!” and “I WAS KILLING HER ON ACCIDENT!”

“By accident, Sweetie. By accident. Please stop killing your sister by accident.”

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