As I drove her to camp, I said simply, “Babe, I’m sorry we had to rush so much this morning.”
The Boy had woken up in a mood, something that has become more commonplace in our morning routines since he turned three a few months ago. On this particular morning, he was a little stubborn, a little clingy, and completely preventing me from doing anything that I needed to be doing. We were running late.
So we rushed. I packed lunch boxes in record time, squeezed in a little summer reading (thank you iPad app), and I’m only mildly sure we all left the house with brushed teeth and hair. I hate mornings like this. I hate having to rush the kids, to rush myself, and I especially hate when we go our separate ways after such a rushed morning.
I took a deep breath and tried to smooth things over with a heartfelt apology.
“It’s okay mom. But maybe you should just quit your job.”
I explained that quitting my job would mean that we would not have money to do all of the fun things she like to do, like the camp we were driving to at that very moment. I didn’t see this as a time to explain health insurance to a six-year old, but I think she understood that life would change drastically if my employment status changed.
“Well,” she continued. “Why don’t you just get a different job?”
So, I explained that a different job might mean that I wouldn’t have time to take her to all of the fun things she likes to do, like her camp or dance class. And, a new job would almost certainly not give her the opportunity to occasionally stay with me on days when I worked from home.
“Well, why don’t you get a new job … like be a pop star or gymnastics teacher? They don’t have to go allll the time like other jobs make you.”
Sweet girl, I thought. She really thinks I could be a pop star. It doesn’t matter to her that she has heard me sing tone deaf note after tone deaf note. It doesn’t matter to her that I have exactly zero dance moves. (Is it possible to have a negative number of dance moves? If so, I do.) She doesn’t see my inadequacies. Or, if she does, she accepts them, accepts me, and keeps going.
She doesn’t consider, even for a second, that I couldn’t do this if I wanted to. She believes in me, not just with the young, naïve mind of a child who has yet to get to know the ways of the world, but with the all-encompassing love that a child has for her mother.
I explained to her that I don’t exactly have the skill set one needs to be a pop star or gymnastics teacher. I laughed a little. She laughed, “Well, Mom. I guess you should just keep your job. For now, there’s nothing we can do about it. But one day, when I’m a pop star, I will just pay you all of my money to hang out with me.”
“That would be the best job ever,” I replied.