"This hurts me more than it hurts you," mother says.
"That's not even possible!" angry child yells.
And stomps off to her room.
I remember being that child, and I remember hearing those words.
I didn't believe them then. I don't think any child in the history of the world has ever believed those words. I grew up, forgave my mother for the lie, and became a mother myself.
For fourteen years, I mostly forgot about those words.
And then it happened.
My daughter- my sweet, precious, beautiful baby girl who I adore more than life itself- turned into a teenager.
And there came a point where I had to give a consequence- a big one.
I went through the motions, did what had to be done, told her that I could, in fact, make her life worse than it already is, and I had.
And a little piece of my heart broke when I saw the pain in her face.
I had just taken something important away from my baby girl.
And for all her back talk, and all her attitude, and all her teenager-ness, she still wanted to be tucked in at night.
And after I kissed her head, she asked if she could please go.
And I had to say no.
And as I walked out of her room, I could barely remember her disrespect, could barely remember her disregard for others, all I could think of was my baby asking please.
And it hurt.
And in that moment, those words, those terrible words, echoed through the bowels of my memory, and I thought, "this hurts me more than it hurts you."
The irony of that statement hit.
Finally, I know what my mother meant.
Finally, I realized the truth of these words.
To take something away from the child you love more than life itself is devastating.
It hurt me to the point of tears.
But my goal is not to save myself heartache, my goal is to raise a strong, capable, kind, and educated human being.
And to reach this goal, nice mommy has to walk away and let mean mommy straighten things out.
I have undergone a mommy rite-of-passage, and I am not sure if I am glad for it or not.
I only pray that my daughter will be stronger for it.