They look to us for comfort. They look at us to make it right, but sometimes it’s out of our control.
As a person, I really have few fears; but, as a parent, I have hundreds of them–innumerable. My heart breaks when I know that my son is sick. Besides taking him to the doctor, and giving him medicine to make him feel better, I just wish I could do more. It doesn’t ever seem like it’s enough. I can’t make him well in the blink of an eye (or faster)!
I know it is silly, but when my son is sick, I want to see his pain go away. Logic and sense be damned–all I see is my child in pain, and I want it to stop. I feel so helpless, so useless. All I can do is hold him and wait for the medicine to start working.
Our children often look to us as superheroes–nothing is outside the scope of our abilities. We make food appear. We chase the darkness away, when dreams become too scary. We are the most comfortable beds they have ever slept on. In their eyes, we can accomplish amazing feats and have Herculean strength. We are fearless and indestructible–they are not aware that they are our Kryptonite.
Seeing the pain in their eyes–the sadness and hurt there–can bring us to our knees, without saying a word.
So, our kids want us to fix it and make it better, like we always have and always do. They are unaware that our powers are not limitless, that we (as parents) are, in fact, just mortal. They are unaware that the only power we really may have is the ability to make one heck of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
So here I am at 3 am–writing this post–as I wait and listen, to see if my son needs me. I’m keeping my nightly vigil. I am within earshot of his bedroom, to jump into action if he awakes. He wakes up every few hours. We hold him, cuddle him and try to get him back to sleep–try to get him to drink something too.
As a parent, this is one of the most helpless time in our lives. All we can do is watch and wait.
So, here I will be–until he feels better. I wish I could do more. But I’m here nonetheless, even if I don’t really have the superpowers to change how he feels. I will keep this vigil. He won’t go it alone.
Where are the real superpowers when we need them?