I'd like to think that there are a zillion reasons why I'd make a great mom.
But in the past week something came up that made me really, really mourn the mom I'm not (yet).
A friend of mine at school told me about her daughter, who is a new kindergartner. She loves school, but she is very, very anxious. They just did the fire drills, and immediately she was worried about fires. "Why do we have to practice for a fire if there isn't a good chance that there WILL BE a fire?" She was worried about starting kindergarten, because she rapidly leapt ahead into the future... "If I go to kindergarten that means I'm growing up, and if I'm growing up then I'll have to move out one day and go to college and I DON'T WANT TO LEAVE YOU YET!"
I admire her forward thinking, and I can relate to the worst-case-scenario thinking patterns.
She was worrying herself into a tizzy.
I immediately thought of a Kevin Henkes book, Wemberly Worried. Wemberly is worried about everything -- the cracks in the wall (what if they get bigger and the house falls down or something scary comes out of it?), checking to make sure her parents still exist at night after she's gone to bed, worrying about her stuffed rabbit when it's in the wash. Wemberly reminded me of my friend's daughter, and I thought maybe the book would be comforting--because at the end she finds a friend at school who also worries and she discovers that she can worry just enough but not too much.
So I bought it online and when it came in I put it on her desk with a note to review it and let me know if she thought it would be helpful or just cause new worries she hadn't thought of yet (you just never know).
My friend came to me later in the day when I saw her for the first time and she had tears in her eyes...the book was PERFECT. Her daughter actually shares some of those fears about the cracks in the walls and the parents disappearing and whatnot.
It made me so happy, because finding the right book for the right child is something I enjoy, and picture books can be healing.
But it also made me so sad, because I have a room upstairs that is absolutely full of beautiful picture books and board books, and a room downstairs that has all my natural history type picture books, and I have no one to enjoy them with...no one to share them with...no one who can learn from them and relate to them and feel better because a book understood them.
Someday I hope that I can find just the right book for my child, and show them all the ways that reading can be entertaining and educational and emotionally nurturing.
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