Don't really worry until you quit worrying

I was seriously excited all day to have something to do at 9:00 on a Wednesday night.
Having just starting blogging with ChicagoNow, I was very recently introduced to Blogapalooza, and the idea of someone telling me what to write about and having a time limit excited me an almost stupid amount.

Nerd alert…I was totally sitting at my computer with the TV off just waiting for 9:00 to roll around so I could finally see what tonight’s topic was and submit a blog about it in one hour.

Tonight’s mission:
Write about a character or scene in a movie or book that affected you in some way.

Well, shit.

The last movie I watched was Disney Planes and the one before that was Major League.
The last book I read was Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
And I don’t even remember what I ate for lunch…because I forgot to eat lunch.

I gave myself a few minutes to sit back and remember a time when I actually read books for myself and watched movies that were geared towards my interests and not that of a four year old (oh, or my husband)…and it didn’t take me long to instantly remember one of my favorite characters in one of my guilty pleasure Jodi Picoult reads.

It’s not necessarily my favorite book that she has written, but in House Rules, she writes about a boy named Max, who has Asperger’s Syndrome.
The chapters alternate being told by different characters, and let me tell you that you do not have to have a child with any defined disability to be moved by the chapters told by Emma…Max’s mom.

There is just this honesty in her character.
She struggles with things I could not imagine having to struggle with, yet she worries about the same things I worry about.

As a parent, you want to do everything you can for your child. You want to provide them with the best of everything and from the second they arrive into this world, you spend the majority of your time trying to figure out what it is that you are supposed to be doing to help them be the best little versions of whoever it is they are supposed to be.
There is this unbelievable pressure that you almost don’t even notice happening until you feel like you are going to explode, and there is this worry…this constant, constant underlying worry that just never goes away.

While I cannot remember what I had for lunch today, there is a line in one of the chapters narrated by Emma that I remind myself of all of the time.

“The very fact that you worry about being a good mom means you already are one.”

I don’t know if I have ever been more connected to a line in any book…ever.

What a perfect breakdown of it all.
In a supermom infested world, I’m constantly wondering if I made the right choice or if I could be doing more.
I worry that I haven’t spent enough time with my children and I worry that I haven’t left them alone long enough to play independently.
“What if he is an outcast? What if he is a bully? What if I yelled too often? Should I have gotten mad that we spent 2 hours on a color by number, or am I being too hard on him?”

Emma has obstacles that I don’t have to face. She can’t talk to her son like I can talk to mine. She has to have a schedule while I think I have to have a schedule. But she has every worry that I have.

Yes, Emma is a character and she is not real,but the stuff written through this character’s eyes makes you feel like you are in good company. And thanks to Emma, I feel like the fact that I know that I’m not doing this perfectly and I worry that I should be doing more is actually enough.

Thanks to Emma, I’ll worry when I quit worrying.

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