Part two of my awesome car trip with EC and RC was the drive home, where we dove into meatier topics. Not on purpose, but as part of a flow of good friends in a car for more than three hours and the conversations that emerge. We talked openly about our parents and how our experiences as children, combined with our parents’ parenting has molded our parenting and the anxieties or habits we work with.
I confided that I spend a good amount of time being concerned that Miss Red will hate me – I know, it drives my husband crazy – but I do. I fear that she’ll never want to be a part of my life, never want to see me again and just turn her back on me. Why? I don’t know.
While sharing this, EC asked me something I had never considered: Think of the good she’ll take from you, and how she’ll love those parts of you.
I had never considered that there might be parts of me my daughter would love. Maybe I’m so caught up in my entire love for her, that I had an “all or nothing” mentality about this emotion – that she would either love me or hate me, and not, what is probably true, that she’ll love parts of me and hate (maybe not) parts of me, too.
Can I share what a relief that was? That that sentence, in the moment, and in retrospect, washed away layers of anxiety? Again, why? I myself have no issues with love. I love myself, I know I’m lovable, I have loving relationships. It’s this seed, this stick, this root, this essence, this unnamed that drives me to the brink of tears when thinking of my daughter.
Honestly, what it comes down to is that I haven’t quite learned to be in the moment with my daughter. I can be present, but if I’m honest, there is that part of me, that clinging, hopeful, needy part that is wrapped up in real and imagined interactions, that cries softly please love me.