A couple of years ago, I was driving back from Chicago, from one of my husband’s football games.
My third child was sleeping in the back seat.
Todd was driving the team van a few miles behind me.
The highway was under construction (shocking for Illinois, I know), and the pylons were perfectly, uniformly, hypnotizingly placed.
I opened the windows.
I blared the radio.
I called my husband, who did not hear the phone, as when driving a van full of players, he tends to wear headphones and listen to podcasts and comedians.
As much as I hated to do it, I called my mom, well after midnight.
“Will you talk to me and keep me awake?”
“Of course, (go back to sleep dear, I’m going to talk to Mary), how was the game?”
My mom stayed on the phone with me for almost 2 hours that night. Once I hit Iowa, I felt ok to hang up, the stinking pylons behind me.
Over the course of the call, I apologized multiple times. I did not want to wake my mom up, but I knew from that I COULD.
I would like my children to know the same. Whether the issue is drinking, an uncomfortable situation, or even just needing someone to talk to or help staying awake, they can call me.
I may not love being woken up, as I am sure my own mom did not enjoy it. But she did it, and when I spoke to her the next day, she told me not to mention it again, it wasn’t a big deal.
I have received calls to pick them up from sleepovers, from a camping trip, from a party that was no longer fun. I want them to understand that when something does not feel right to them, they do not have to stay.
I want them to know that even when they no longer live under my roof, that mom is a safe place.
I will come get them.
I will get their friends.
I will answer the phone.