Don't get me wrong, there are things worth nudging for. But not this. Not a field trip.
"You don't have to go, buddy. You can stay home today if you want to. But we have to learn something today, ok? Me and you. What do you want to learn about?"
He thought about it for a minute. He looked out the front window and noticed a robin about to burst with eggs. "The birds, mama", he said.
So, birds it was. We sat in the grass and watched the birds. I found a nest mid-construction and I showed him that a mama bird was making a home for her babies. Just then that mama came by the back side with some material in her beak. Seeing us she dodged and waited. She dropped her load and loudly encouraged us to vacate the space. She had work to do.
"Do you see that bird up on our roof? Right over there? She is building this nest and it's time for us to go."
I took the opportunity to talk about why we leave the creatures of the world be. Why we must respect their space because they have important things to do. I told them both that this mama bird was preparing a safe place for her precious new babies.
I thought about how my babies are no longer "new".
In 19 days he will be five. FIVE.
It feels so wrong. He's so small. He's so vulnerable. His heart is so sensitive. His feelings are BIG and his tears that come when he feels unsafe slice me like a warm knife through butter. I am left marveling at him every night and wishing he would...just. stop. growing. up. He needs more time.
I need more time. I want to scream to the universe that I am not ready. I am not ready for him to be FIVE.
He rested his head to my breast tonight and said "Mama? I wish I could be like a baby again. I wish I can stay with my mommy all the time. Then I can be safe." His words took aim at my heart and the silent tears streamed. I smelled his freshly washed hair.
I squeezed him so hard knowing that that is the way he feels the squeeze the best. He needs his hugs harder than the other kids. The pressure calming him with every passing second. Then I wrapped the blanket under him and pulled it so so tight. I told him he is always his mama's baby. I told him that mama is always with him. I told him that for forever I would be working to keep him safe. I told him that I will always hug him the hardest. I told him that THAT is a mama's important work.
He said, "Like the birds, mom?"
My heart skips.
"Yes, my baby boy. Just like the birds", I said, as I slid in next to him and promised to stay until he fell asleep.