I wake to my husband’s alarm and roll away as he attempts to steal a cuddle along with five minutes of snooze-time. While he’s dressing, I mentally apologize for being greedy about sleep and verbally admit I forgot to pack his lunch. He’ll have to spend money we don’t have on soggy cafeteria green beans and chicken. Sorry, hubby.
I try to catch some solo sleep, but hear my son stirring through the monitor. Instead of rushing to get him, I lie in bed and reach for the book-club novel on my nightstand, unread past the first two pages. Before I find my place, my son’s sweet babbles turn into shouts. I shouldn’t have left him so long. Sorry, book club. Sorry, son.
Rolling out of bed, I trip over the dog and apologize, ostensibly for treating her like a rug — oh, and forgetting to let her out before bed — but really for allowing my son to claim affections once hers alone. I peek at the time on my cell phone and notice I’ve missed a call from my sister on the West Coast. I remember I never replied to her last text pleading for advice on nursing her distractible baby. Sorry, puppy. Sorry, sis.
I consider putting on my running clothes but instead grab pants only technically not pajamas. The weight of the day is already on my shoulders as I slump down the hall. My students’ essays should have been graded weeks ago. That means I’ve no time to take my son to his grandparents’ today like I said I would. It also means I’ll miss my friend’s birthday dinner. I already know my family’s evening meal will be macaroni and a freezer vegetable.
Really, everybody, I am so, so sorry.
As I slowly open my son’s bedroom door, I’m startled. I’m met not by tears or disappointment but by a squeal and a smile shining brighter than the morning sun through the window. The dog has followed me to his crib and is wagging her tail and licking my hand. I finally remember who I forgot to apologize to. I did the best I could yesterday, and I’m doing the best I can today. Tomorrow, I’ll try to do even better. My family loves me, my friends love me, and I love myself, even if I don’t say it often. I resolve to stop apologizing. And when I forget my resolution before I reach the kitchen, I’ll at least remember this: It’s okay to pass out apologies, as long as I save one for myself.
Sorry, me. You’re doing just fine.
Emily H. Moore makes jam, crochets, reads, jogs and gardens on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. She’s a proud wife to her best friend, mother of an 18-month-old boy and 10-year-old puppy, teacher of writing and literature for Virginia’s Community College System, and member of the ESVA MOPS, a tiny group with a huge heart.