Children are worth your time.
I remember when my son was very small he seemed to be overcome with sadness at times. Too young to put his feelings into words, I could only speculate. Am I not a good parent? Is he missing something crucial to his happiness? Did I need to quit my job? How I wish that he could formulate his words, and in the meantime I would try to make whatever it was go away. I did. Yet, as I did so much, I noticed I was doing more and more by myself.
My husband is what one would call a workaholic. From the moment his feet touch the floor in the morning, until his feet left the floor at night, he was either at work, or his mind was on work. I never seemed to get the help that I needed. As the days turned into years, the solemn look on my son’s face only appeared as my husband came home. There he would be sitting under a tree, waiting. Maybe today will be different. Maybe today he might not be so tired. Maybe we could toss a ball, or read a book. Maybe. Only, my husband didn’t seem to take notice the same way I noticed. Instead, as he walked by he would drop a piece of candy, a ball he never intended to throw, or some other sedative for the moment into his little lap. That is when I would see the look. The sad, lonely look on my little boy’s face.
I tried to tell my husband how my son was feeling. Always too tired to discuss it, he seemed to be somewhat tuned into it anyway, because the gifts got bigger, better, and more expensive. A new firetruck, a puppy, a bicycle, or whatever seemed to suffice for the time. Now it’s not to say that a 5 year old didn’t enjoy such gifts. He must have, for he soon came to expect it. When my husband came home, there he would be. “What did you get me, Dad”? he would ask, excited. His biggest let down then was my husband ever coming home empty handed. We had a problem, and I knew it.
Published in: Family