I think today qualified as one of the real low points in my mothering career: I FORGOT it was Youngest’s birthday.
I’ll give you a moment to digest how bad that is.
Go ahead. Judge me. I deserve it.
I could come to my own defense. I could tell you that he and his Dad are in Chicago and that his birthday present is tickets to a Bear’s game which is tomorrow and that led me to the think somehow that tomorrow is the big day.
Also, I had just woken up. From a bad night’s sleep. And I hadn’t had my tea yet. I was barely awake, for God’s sake.
And not only that, he was not particularly friendly when I called. Come to think of it, he kinda gave me the Heisman…
"Hey," I said when he answered the phone. "What are you guys doing?"
"Mom," he answered, "his voice even more filled with barely restrained disgust, "it is nine-thirty in the morning."
I was hurt. He clearly didn’t want to talk to me. At moments like this, I can feel reduced to something that bears a strong resemblance to a once -beloved but now outgrown stuffed animal. Its horrible to feel as if my usefulness has come to an end.
It stings, that feeling.
"OK, well, can I talk with your Dad."
"Aren’t you even going to wish me Happy Birthday?"
As Oldest would say, "AHHHHHHHHHH."
I have to consider the possibility that I might have been unconsciously trying to hurt him, to make him see I matter after all. I hate considering that possibility.
Recently, when I suggested something of this nature to Youngest, he replied earnestly, "Well, if that is that is true, I didn’t do it CONSCIOUSLY."
Neither did I, my baby, neither did I.
And I am so sorry.