Last week, as I was giving the boychild his bath, I was inspired to tell him all that I love about him.

Usually, I’m yelling at him not to drop his sister on the floor.  Or not to smear his peanut butter fingers on the sofa.

I love the little bugger and hate when I lose my temper with him, usually because I feel like a crappy mother and not the mum I want to be: Serene, earthy, accepting, able to set limits without losing my shit.

So the other day, I decided to think about all the things I love about him. Which I know intuitively, but I wanted to spell them out for myself, as a reminder of sorts about this little sprite’s unique being in the world.

So I was giving him his bath. Usually, this entails some sort of game where he wants me to play a bad guy or a dragon, so that he can be the superhero and destroy me with his sticky webs. If this isn’t some latent Freudian power struggle, I don’t know what is.

We did this for a while, and then as I was drying him off, I decided to tell him just some of the things I love about him.

The conversation went a little like this:

Me: Do you know what I love about you, honey?

Him: What?

Me: Well, I love your imagination.

Him: Oh.

Me: And, I love your eyes. I love how they sparkle.

Him. Why? Because I just had a bath?

Me:  Well, that’s part of it. But they also sparkle because you’re so full of life.

Him: Oh.

Pause.

Him: Mommy?

Me: Yes.

Him: Your eyes don’t sparkle.

Gee. Thanks, kiddo. Um. Maybe it’s because I’m a just a little bit tired?

Note to self: This kiddo sees right through me. Must try not to show child that parenthood is wearing and draining.

Must get sparkle back.

But how?

Suggestions welcome.

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