It came to me sometime after midnight, when the house was still and my heart was beginning its rhythmic pounding,
This thought that I needed to check in with the kids, poll them, poke around inside their brains for a bit and get them to scratch out the nitty gritty of how they feel about our family.
I bit my lip in the middle of the night as I thought through the handful of questions that I should ask them:
What is your favorite thing about our family?
What does mama (daddy) do well?
What do you wish mama (daddy) would stop doing?
Do you feel loved?
Do you have a wish or a dream for our family?
I ran through six or eight other questions before landing on ten.
And this morning, I wrote them all down on lined notebook paper and passed them around. The kids grumbled and banged their heads on the table. They whined and shrugged their shoulders.
But they got them done.
This evening, long after the last one has slipped up the stairs, I sit down to decipher their answers.
The older girls’ papers say the same things: Our family is fun. Mama gets mad all the time. I want to move and go to a real church.
The boys’ papers say different things: Mama can dance. Daddy is funny. I wish our family didn’t have anger issues. We’re cool.
I reread them, running my eyes between the lines, looking for the things they wanted to say, but didn’t.
Each word is packed with its own message but I’m not searching for some hidden message.
I’m searching for the heart of each messenger,
Because that’s what mamas do.
As often as I can , I join Lisa-Jo Baker and the Five Minute Friday community for five minutes of unedited writing. This week’s prompt is Messenger. And I’m afraid I’ve not done this story nor this prompt justice. Time ran away from me!