Last night after Robert got home, he and Miles played chase. That's their favorite game.
It's always starts out really cute, because Miles has the most delighted laugh. Adorable, melt your heart, belly laughter. But I usually wind up standing in the kitchen, anxious, because I know what I'm about to hear: Miles crying after he's fallen and hurt himself somehow.
It seems like ever since he started walking, he's been falling. It's so hard not to rush to him and comfort, soothe and hold him. This is what I struggle with daily. Because I don't want him to be a whiner or a kid who thinks he is hurt when he isn't. So I attempt to hang back and be cool, waiting to see if he really needs me.
Over the weekend he fell, and I rushed to him, while Robert said, "Don't pick him up. He's okay." But mamas know the difference between a cry that means "I'm hurt" and a cry that means "I'm mad that I fell." And this was an "I'm hurt" kind of cry.
And he was. Poor little dude cut his lip on one of those four crazy baby teeth he has. There was a little blood.
I surprised myself by being calmer than I would've thought - especially since I was about to walk out the door. We put a teething ring on his lip, which made it better. And I held him on my lap for several minutes, which made me feel better.
And it struck me that this is what motherhood is all about - knowing how to find that elusive balance between being there too much and not being there enough.
Sometimes I lie in bed, freaking myself out because he is ALL the way downstairs (where he has been sleeping since he was three months old!), worried that he might need me but somehow be unable to cry out for me. And then I remind myself that he is turning into a little boy; he is a person who needs his own bed, his own space.
I know that I will always have to work on that sense of balance when it comes to my baby. Has any mom ever achieved it successfully? Probably not. But I guess being a mama means you have to try.