Last month with The Motherhood Project, I shared an image that reflected upon the theme of independence, specifically about struggling with the feeling of gaining comfort with my children's growing need for it.
Around the time that I shared that image, my 12 year old exercised that independence and fell 15 feet while climbing a tree, fracturing his ankle. We spent an evening in the emergency room, feeling grateful he didn't fall on his head, and a restless overnight at the hospital while he was observed for further foot damage/trauma (thankfully, none).
We missed fireworks on the Fourth of July and we also began the depressing process of canceling a 2 week family adventure to Europe, one that we had been eagerly awaiting and that signified a celebration of being reunited as a family after 5 long years of dad being away at school. I have been working like crazy, and this vacation meant everything to me. I could barely keep myself together while I hid my disappointment from my son, and each day I was back at work instead of boarding an airplane or drinking a pint by the fire was filled with anger and sadness.
And while it was also a bummer for my son to be stuck in the house for the entire month of July, my other son suffered too. My poor 10 year old had gained so much independence in June because of his big brother and the buddy system. And now his buddy couldn't swim or bike to Lake Harriet or run around the neighborhood or play tag at the park. And my 10 year old's summer fun came to a screeching halt.
My image this month makes me think about July from his perspective. Peering out a window to the freedom and carefree childhood on the other side that suddenly eluded him. Feeling bored and hoping for his brother to make a fast recovery so they can once again climb and run barefoot and come home with stories of adventure.
The good news is that the cast comes off in about 3 weeks, and then with a bit of physical therapy, the advertures will resume for them both. Trees will be climbed again and I will have to remember how important it is to allow them to climb trees, even if I know that sometimes they do get hurt.