My girl announced yesterday that she wrote a list of all the things she is thankful for during a school assignment. There was not a single mention of me.
A few weeks ago, the school psychologist was working with her on emotions/feelings and how to express them. He was discussing the emotion love and she quickly listed off all the people in her life she loves. I was not on that list either.
Most days I am good with her style of expressing her love and appreciation. The subtleness of it many might miss, but I see it. Her style is coming out of her room when I get home to make sure (I assume) that it is me and (I assume) I am ok. It is the way she asks me to take her to DQ so she can buy ice cream–I am the only one she trusts to take her shopping for anything and not abandon her at the checkout. I see it when she needs something opened and she sets it next to me, hoping that I will automatically open it without expecting a verbal.
Even though I realize that to her there is the socially unnecessary hugs and kisses and fluff that is available, I sure would like to experience from my daughter, something.
And what are those people that she “loves” and that are on her gratitude list doing that I am not??
They don’t have expectations. They don’t have expectations to communicate, to advocate, and to move through the difficult hospital job. They don’t expect her to be accountable, to be reciprocal and to be engaged.
Frankly, they don’t have any idea of what it takes.