It was 11pm.
“What’s wrong?” Fadza asked me, concerned.
I was sitting on the couch, hugging a pillow so tight listening to sad songs. “You know what’s wrong….”
Let’s rewind 3 hours earlier.
We were at my inlaws place because my youngest bil is back from the UK for holiday, and we all greeted him with open arms. The kids were so excited especially and they gathered around his suitcase to see if he got them any chocolates/toys/cookies/toys/lollipops/toys from there. It was happy all round, everyone had huge smiles on their faces because the whole family is complete now – everyone is together having dinner.
Suddenly Daniel came up to me and said in a soft tone, “Mommy, can I seeeee verrr nighttttt?”
“What? I cannot hear you, Daniel.”
“Can I sleep over here tonight?” he asked me with puppy eyes.
I know he was so excited to be with his uncles especially Idzuan and the little cousins were all so hyped up wanting to spend time and play together. It was also the school holiday period so of all times to sleep over with his cousins, it would be now.
Except my heart started to hurt.
Daniel has slept apart from me many times when I travel for work for days, a couple times even up to 10 days e.g. when I went for a course at Stanford, I had to leave the kids for that long. But all those times had reasons and it was me leaving so we had no choice but to part. This time, it was him choosing to be apart from us for one night. Oh the pain in my heart, can someone fix it please.
I had no reason to say no other than “Mommy misses you and wants to cuddle you till the day she dies so no you cannot sleep over anywhere ever”. He was a boy excited to play dinosaurs and trains with his cousins and sometimes even boys get tired of just hanging out with their sister all day everyday. #sorrymariam
“I guess you could….” I said slowly. The cousins cheered and Daniel said “Yay, thank you Mommy,” kissed me and left to play.
When it was time for Fadza and I to leave with Mariam (she didn’t want to sleep away from us, good girl), my heart sank to the bottom of the ocean. I felt so heavy leaving Daniel, I kept kissing and hugging him, I kept asking him if he was sure he didn’t want to come home with us. To which he replied, “Yes Mommy I’m sure I want to sleepover.” All 20 times. Ok fine, just checking!
As I left my inlaws house, I kept looking back at him. I took one step down the stairs and I just couldn’t. I ran back to Daniel and hugged him, much to his annoyance. “Are you su-“ I started to ask before he cut me off by running around the house with his cousin laughing about dinosaurs. Ugh, no love whatsoever for this mother of yours!
In the car I was quiet. At home I was quiet. I looked at Daniel’s empty bed and felt a hole in my heart. The house felt incomplete and suddenly empty. There was no dinosaur show playing on TV and no one running around looking for me. I wanted to cry. My son is having his first official sleepover away from me, and I lost a piece of my heart somewhere in the flood of my imaginary tears on the floor.
You know what sucked? The fact that he didn’t even care! He was having so much fun that Mom was probably number 57 on his list of things he’s thinking about, somewhere right there below Homework.
My son is growing up way too fast and I don’t like this! No more sleepovers!!
So yeah, that’s what’s wrong tonight.