My kid is sad and it’s probably my fault

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I have the most lovable, happy-go-lucky kid in the world. Usually. Lately, though, he’s been less than happy-go-lucky. His spirits are a bit low, not terribly low, but low enough to be noticed. It’s easy to blame the recent changes in his life: suddenly having to move to a new house, in a new town, in a new school district; graduating preschool, which he was not looking forward to, by the way; Grandma and his cousins getting ready to move to Myrtle Beach; Grandma and his cousins not moving to Myrtle Beach.

His poor little world has been thrown into such uncertainty even a sane, well-adjusted adult would have trouble dealing. Unfortunately for Boo, he does not have a sane, well-adjusted adult in his life to model so he deals as best he can. He smiles while you’re looking. He continues to talk non-stop about whatever topic dejour has struck his fancy. He continues to play with his toys and create complex play-lands with in-depth back stories.

Like me, he still enjoys jumping in puddles in the rain, watching the clouds swim across the sky, and thrives on knowledge. 

Also like me, he smiles less brilliantly when the audience is gone. He chatters less when your ears turn deaf. Like me, he stares off into the ether until snapped back. 

It’s easy to blame life’s new challenges for the slight, oh so slight dimming in his bright blue-green eyes and let’s face it, I want to blame life. But there’s this nagging thought at the back of my mind, a tiny whisper, what if it’s not the recent changes upsetting him? What if it’s me? What if my tendency toward anxiety is rubbing off on my poor boy? 

This playful little boy, full of curiosity and love looks to me for his queues. ‘Are we OK, Mommy?’ As much as I may try to keep up the brave face, is it possible my queue anxiously and indirectly tells him, ‘No, we are not OK’?


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