From Super Dad to Lousy Dad in one crashing forgotten birthday. Parental immortality is so temporary.
One of the many beautiful Waldorf traditions is the celebration of a child's birthday in the kindergarten. The teachers weave the story of the child's development and birth into a magical journey, culminating in "coming over the rainbow bridge" with one chosen angel. It sounds a bit flaky in writing, but you gotta be there, you'd have tears.
But over-busy me (yes, too busy) forgot until this morning to write up the details about Zekiah's arrival, so his sad teacher called me from school at 7:30 to say we would have to postpone the party. As I was breaking the news to Zekiah, she called back again to earnestly assure that she "holds no judgement" about it.
Bless her heart, she knows that we parents hold enough self-judgment that hers would be unnecessary. How on earth could my business launch, woodpile, writing, organizing the office, and cleaning the house for mom's visit have been more important than creating magic around my 6-year-old's celebration? We still haven't even sent out invitations for his party in 2 days (sound familiar?).
His teacher may be evolved enough to somehow suspend judgment, but I sure aint. It's inexcusable, it sucks. The only consolation is knowing that Zekiah is so resilient that he will adjust well to the new plan (he's already trumpeting about the 3 days he now gets to celebrate instead of 2), and the renewed resolve to use the next 2 days to create a great party on Sunday.
Sarah's Mama Renew classes rightly teach women to not judge themselves harshly, to accept that we're doing the best we can. And while it may be unhealthy and unproductive to sit wallowing in self-recrimination for the rest of this long morning when I should have been in magic birthland with my child, it would be dishonest to pretend that I was anywhere close to my best this week (ironically a week when I was trumpeting my powers in other blog posts).
So we beat ourselves up a little, vow to better, and move on. I look this lousy Dad moment straight in the eye, acknowledge and learn from it, and hope that somewhere beneath his sunny disposition these little failings don't plant seeds of sadness in my beautiful birthday boy. He deserves more than I gave him this week, and I deserve a little judgment.
Write to Renew - One of our previous graduates, the talented Jay Nahani, is leading us in a Write to Renew workshop June 14th. For writers and non-writers alike, this one-d...