I watch as they climb, obstinate in their ability. Exploring new territory as if it’s an every day occurrence. Christopher Columbus sailing a sea of swings and slides. Other children, some bigger, some littler, pass like gusts of wind as they run parallel. One step after another, again and again. To repeat, happily, merrily without missing a beat.
I wince with every surface scaled, envisioning the worst of what could be. I want to call out be careful, look behind you, don’t trample each other. Eventually, I have to look away.
When one falls, tumbling backwards or bonked heads. Sympathy is pursued only briefly, momentarily. My role, as a mom, comes into play with outstretched arms and a word of encouragement. This I can do, along with a possible band-aid. I have to hold myself back from saying here, sit awhile. Calm down. We can come back to explore another day.
But another day is too far away. They want it all today. So this round of tears are smeared, dirty hands and knees wiped away. To have that resilience. There is too much to do, more territory to claim. They get right back up again, without missing a beat. They climb and slide and run. Gusts of wind passing by.
I send them off and hope for the best.
My children are courageous.
I am just faking it.