I sat on the couch, my feet tucked under me, my baby curled into my chest. This is the way all my stories start.
But yesterday, after patting me possessively on the chest and saying "mommy," my littlest looked up at me inquisitively and said, "sister?"
"She's sleeping, baby. Should we go wake her?"
"Sister," she agreed, nodding emphatically.
The museum had been exhausting. Both girls had run from room to room, touching everything. They'd climbed, they'd built, they'd crafted.
And at some point, halfway through the day, I'd let go.
BG was sitting at the circuit table with the teenage volunteer, pinching the leads of tiny wires to batteries, switches, lightbulbs, asking the same questions again and again. Little sister was sitting at the building table, dropping a nail repeatedly through the hole in a block, furiously shaking off my attempts to help.
So, I sat. And I watched.
And I realized my baby was figuring out more than I could ever teach her as she patiently and diligently experimented. And I realized BG was charming the volunteer and not annoying him. And I realized there was no hurry, no agenda, no need to push or control anything. And I sat. And I breathed.
I was happy.
But now I was home. We three piled on the couch had nothing left. I turned on Martha Speaks. And, unfortunately, Facebook.
All weekend, I'd seen BlogHer posts, and although I wanted to hug my friends, I hadn't really been jealous. I've come to terms with who I am, with my way, with my identity. I know that truly? I wouldn't love a conference like that.
I know who I am. I am trying to believe that being who I am is okay, that it isn't a fault. That my way is no worse than anyone else's. I'm working on it.
Yesterday, when I was collapsing into my couch, both of my children now fusing with my body, I felt jealous. And what I found was that I wasn't jealous of the parties, of the accolades, even of the connections.
I was jealous of the direction. The certainty. The clarity of purpose.
I wanted to feel sure of something.
Sitting on the floor of the museum, the only thing I'd been sure of was that I wasn't in control. And that was okay.
I guess I have to learn to do that here too.
And to remember that my way isn't wrong.