"Good morning, Tricia! And how are you today?"
I have a half-second lead time to decide: to be authentic or to give a safe answer.
"You know what?" I pause for a moment. For so many reasons. "I'm very sad today."
"Sad?! Well, that's because the sun isn't shining today. I'm sure that's why."
Actually, it's not. I love grey skies. And you don't have enough in you for me to tell you that I want to pass the parenting baton. Tag the teammate. I don't think I can do the reading log and the math homework tonight. Plus the baths and the fingernails. And the fighting and the silly. I don't want to do this anymore, and today I'm not even striving for excellence. I'm putting one foot in front of the other because that's what needs to happen. So, you know what? You're the one who asked. I'm sad. And too tired to pretend I'm not.
"Well, that just won't do! You're my ray of sunshine! I count on you to bring sunshine into my life!"
Then don't. Don't do that.
Perhaps it was an honest attempt at sparking a smile... Unfortunately, they missed the part about you needing a breather from being responsible for others. There are those days...thus the lyrics to the song "Make the world go away, get it off of my shoulders..." May you soon get a good opportunity to take a deep breath.
That's why I love who you are because you Are authentic! I'm so sorry to hear that you are sad today Tricia may tomorrow be a better and brighter day for you. xxx
I hear you. Boy, do I! Please don't ask if you aren't ready to listen and please don't give me a plastic flower of happiness if I say I'm sad. Just let me be.
Or--send over a fantastic babysitter that will handle all this for me free, including the homework.
I am so sorry for the path you are walking today. I appreciate the honesty of your answer to the person who asked you how your were as it confronts with genuine truthfulness the fragility of our mortal flesh--something we are taught so often not to acknowledge. As Christ experienced sadness, we know we have a high priest who has shared that feeling and walks with us through its valley of frustration, loss and grief. Where would we be without Him? My prayer for you is a sense of His presence with you in this parenting gig so that you remain confident in knowing what is most important to do, what is OK to leave for another day, and that you have reassurance that you are not alone on the path. Love to you, Tricia.
I'm glad you are real. Perhaps the person who said you need to be his or her ray of sunshine will learn what it is to listen, to be sensitive to others, to empathize, and to take foot from mouth. At any rate, I'm sorry you're sad today.