Just Hug Him!

PARENTING | | December 22, 2008 at 8:23 am

With a snow storm in the forecast it was already going to be an adventurous day. After arriving home from a playdate and putting the younger child down for a nap I managed to somehow cut myself with a glass. Typical mom, instead of dealing with the injury, I was trying to sweep up the fragments so that my older daughter would not step onto any. Amidst all the chaos I managed to make a mess dropping blood on the floor alarming her. When I mentioned to her that mama had a ‘boo-boo” she immediately disappeared, and promptly appeared in her “doctor” garb, declaring that she would “make it all better”. Knowing that I would need some medical attention and the sight if the flurries start to appear was beginning to make me nervous. I opted out of going to the Emergency Room and settled for a Walk-In-Clinic instead, assuming there would be a shorter wait time. I was wrong. After finding out that the previous patients had already been waiting for 3 hours, I decided to make myself comfy (well as comfortable as you can get in a waiting room, sporting an injury).

The weather worsened outside and though it was predicted to be 18 inches, it already looked to be much more than that. For some reason there were plenty of children with injuries at the time. One such child, a young boy (maybe around 6 or 7 years old) caught my eye. He was sobbing the most silent cry ever, obviously in pain, while his dad (I assume) just sat there reading a magazine. I just wanted to hit him (the father, not the son). I am not sure if it was the mommy in me, but I was so angry I could not tear my eyes away from the boy. At some point I think the dad noticed it and then gave his son an annoyed gaze, as if to say “don’t draw attention to yourself”, or “cry quieter”. This seemed to just try and shush the boy but made me much angrier. What was wrong with this man? This child obviously needed some comfort. Much later I was pleased to see (for whatever reason) the man cave in and give his son a quick hug (did I say quick, I meant super quick). I would have loved to see more but I was happy to see any affection offered to the boy. It clearly made a difference to the boy. And then he returned promptly to his paper (grrrr….) while the boy sobbed a little less loudly.

Later, it was not the awful weather outside, or my newly stitched finger that saddened me, it was the memory of the little boy yearning for some affection. Why on earth does it have to take an effort to hug? Would have been different had it been a daughter? Is it unmanly to display or accept affection?

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