February 5, 2014

Ways to Connect

I've been struggling with figuring out how to connect with both kids. I've been struggling with the idea that I may never have a conversation with Moe of any sort, let alone a meaningful one. I know there is always hope but I have to be able to live with the current state as well.

And Jelly, who is an open book, is too much for me sometimes. She talks non-stop, has been testing us like crazy (“no I won't!”) and wears my patience thin. And yet, I cannot adequately explain my depth of feeling of connection with her. She is mine - and it is funny because when she was born, I didn't feel like I had the same connection with her I had with Moe. He was my little guy, and she was the intruder. Now I can't imagine how I could ever be without her.

So I've been trying to notice the ways I can connect with Moe, even without conversation. And like he knew I needed it, he did something the other day that he's never done before. He walked up to me. I flinched a bit, as I often do, with the anticipation of some sort of aggression or demand. But instead he leaned in, wrapped his arms around my legs and pressed his head into me. 

He hugged me.

Then I knelt down and opened my arms. He came in and hugged me all around. He squeezed hard. It was the best hug I've ever had in my life, truly. And then it was over, and despite my every attempt to get another one, there hasn't been one. I can ask Moe for a hug and he'll kind of lean in, arms down, and let me hug him, but until this weekend he had never come over to hug me.

There is so much pain in the realization that my six year old has never really hugged me before. But also so much joy in that small moment.

I had a great moment of connection with Jelly this weekend too. We were in the car together on Friday on her way home from school. She asked to play the soundtrack from Frozen, and I turned it on. We were riding down the highway, both singing along together. It made me so happy. I hope it made her happy too.


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