With a full schedule for everyone in the family, I knew this was going to be a crazy week…and I was right. I thought I had everything organized and I would be 100% prepared going into it…and I was wrong.
On Sunday, I cooked – one pot of chicken soup and one tray of healthy, homemade baked “Mac & Cheese” made with butternut squash puree. My helpful husband vacuumed the house, cleaned up the pots and pans, and folded the laundry. Kiddo walked the dog and assisted at the grocery store. We were totally organized and ready for the week ahead. HA!
On Monday morning, I was cleaning up the house putting away the ever-accumulating pairs of shoes by the front door when it all came crashing down…literally. I was heading down the basement stairs with my hands full when I mid-judged a step and went down – landing on my butt (good thing there’s lots of padding there!) and twisting my knee pretty badly in the process.
As I lay sprawled on the floor trying to a) recover from the shock, and b) attempting to determine if anything was broken, I heard my son and the dog bounding through the house to see what had happened. When he saw me laying at the bottom of the stairs, trying to gather my wits, my son jumped into action – offering to call 911 or call my husband who was already on the train to New York.
After assuring him that this was not a 911-worthy injury, I asked for a cold pack and he ran to get me the bag of “emergency peas” that we keep for icing injuries. He returned with the bag and a plastic cup of water for me to sip while I iced my knee. Stroking my hair, he told me it was going to be ok, and continued to insist that he should call 911 – he only backed off calling 911 after I got up and limped back up the stairs. No serious injury was sustained, just a sore knee and some swelling.
Throughout the week, as I recovered, my little helper was there – lending a shoulder to act as my human crutch as I hobbled along, walking the dog, helping in the kitchen, opening and holding doors, bringing me ice packs, holding my purse, and just being 100% amazing.
But the whole experience got me thinking about vulnerability and how our children behave when they see that we are in a compromised position. I think that sometimes it’s good for kids to see their parents as vulnerable human beings instead of the pillars of strength and infallibility that they typically perceive us to be. We become real, in a way that they don’t usually see us to be – in need of help when we are usually the helpers. And, although it’s not the ideal situation, it gives kids a feeling of being strong and able to help us, they people they love the most, when we need it.
And that whole busy, scheduled-to-the-max week – it became a very relaxing, hang out around the house week…and I didn’t even have to cook.