Your favorite thing to say when you’re mad at me is that I’m not your mom. You don’t have to listen to me because I’m not your mom. You don’t have to do what I ask because I’m not your mom. I get it. I’m not her. I’m never going to be her. And that’s okay, because you are ten and don’t yet see the value in me.
Dear Ten-Year-Old, You’re Right That I’m Not Your Mom, But…
When you are petulant, I care about you enough to still tell you how to behave.
When you are crying, I wipe your tears.
When you are laughing, I’m laughing along with you.
I am your cheerleader when you come home with great news from school.
I am your warm hug when the world has been mean.
I care enough about you that I tell you how to behave in a world of adults.
I love you enough to discipline you when you’ve misbehaved.
When you go to sleep, I check to make sure you’re covered.
When you wake up, I have your clothes waiting and ready.
I will always feed you when you are hungry, and sometimes even when you are not.
My arms will always have a you space shape available in them because, for me, there will always be a spot for you.
What I’m saying, dear child, is that I may not be your mother, but that will never change how much I love you. It will never take away from how much I want you to be a strong, smart woman as you get older. It doesn’t matter how much you try to push me away, I will still be here. Because even though I’m not your mother, I will always love you as if you are my daughter.