When Poppy is upset or sad or hurt or tired, she clings to me and mutters "I got you, I got you, I got you" in my ear. It's one of those things that makes me feel like I'm doing some of this parenting stuff sort of okay. I've done my best to not shush my babies when they're upset. I don't say "you're okay" or "you're fine," I say "I'm here" and "I've got you." And now Poppy knows when she needs someone or something, she's got me. She's got all of us. It's so good for my mama heart to hear Grady comfort her in the same way. "I've got you, Poppy Doodle," he says as he pats her back. "I got you, Grady Bug," she replies.
If you asked me to, I could list a hundred things I do wrong off the top of my head. Like, without taking a breath. I can describe Mount Laundry in great detail. I can list the number of times I've lost my cool and used my snippy snappy voice when my kids / husband / dog / life didn't do what I wanted exactly how I wanted. I can tell you about the pink slime growing in my bathroom sink, the processed crap I ate for lunch instead of green vegetables, the shameful state of my inbox, the weird buzzing noise my fridge is making that I'm choosing to ignore rather than investigate / fix, and on and on and on.
But what will that accomplish? Will telling you how terrible I am make you feel better? Probably not. Will telling you how terrible I am make me feel better? Definitely not. I'm not saying we have to be all positive all the time. I'm not saying we should tamp down our struggles and grit our teeth and smile. I'm saying instead of choosing to be self-deprecating, instead of highlighting the many ways I get it wrong on a daily basis, I want to tell you what I'm doing right. Not because I think it makes me better than anybody else. Not because I think this one win means I'm doing it all right all the time. I want to tell you what I'm doing right -- right now -- because it makes me feel good, and because I hope it encourages you to tell me what you're doing right. I got you.