The Message

Boo has been writing little notes.  To friends, our Pastor, his dad...to me.  He'll try to talk to me when I'm ...um...indisposed.  When I ask him for privacy, I'll hear his footsteps fall away.  Then return. Then a slip of paper get shoved under the door.

As an Only, he is always seeking for me to be his friend.  To play Firehouse with him.  To play Sorry.  To play anything.  Just to keep him company.

It's easy to spoil him because he is an Only.  I may spoil him materially, but I try to keep things in perspective for him; often making him work for the toy.  I try harder not to spoil him emotionally.  I baby him because I think he needs it.  I want to snuggle, buggle, smooch and knooch him as much as possible so that he doesn't feel needy when he's grown.  Be filled to over flowing.  Saturated.  With a deep-seeded sadness that I'm not sure will ever go away, I am trying to be the fertile soil of security for him.  But demands and manipulations and whines?  No way.  No room for that here.  Zero tolerance policy.

I try not to give into his demands and make sure he respects that I have my own life and will play with him when I can.  But then I get distracted.  By the computer.  Laundry.  The messy room.  Anything.  Because I don't really like to play.  I'm a serious sort.  But then a sad little note like this will wake me up:

I got the message, buddy.


Margie said...

It's hard to know exactly where to draw the line between giving emotional support and spoiling, but I think your instincts are spot on. Fill him to overflowing with love, and it will hold him in good stead through harder times.

I hope you all are doing well!

Lora said...

It is hard to find the balance. Of course you can never over-love, but you can spoil.
And of course we struggle with the same thing here. I don't want Jake to think that he is at our beck and call, but I want him to know that when he needs us, we are there.
We are a very physically close family, and very emotionally expressive, but I don't want him to get picked on when he goes to school.

Gah, I don't know.

It will all turn out, I'm sure.

Anonymous said...

I know how you feel. Being a parent isn't easy. Too many fine lines. That note is precious. At least he is telling you what he needs and not bottling it inside.

BTW ... I tagged you on my blog. Sorry. LOL (Read: Seven)

Amy said...

I agree with your approach. We try to teach the kids that our love is a lavishly given gift, for free, in return for nothing. We don't want them to learn that it's in return for manipulation or something else like that. And loads of affection. All the time, whenever possible. Arwen's picking up on it- she kisses the stereo because she likes it.

Why is everything Boo does so cute?

Rebecca said...

Oh, what a wonderful note.

As a mom to an only, I identify with your thoughts.

Your writing just grows lovelier and lovelier.