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I am her safe place

Fat Mum Slim /

I am her safe place.
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Someone once told me it was an honour to be a child’s safe place, and I embraced it for a while, until I didn’t. Sometimes I don’t want to be her safe place.
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Like last week. She’s been going through some pretty underhanded, manipulative and horrible bullying beyond what I thought was possible at her age, and she’s kept it together for the most part. She’s like a balloon, each insult or incident inflates that balloon a little more and she walks around fragile, like she could pop at any minute. Nobody can see it. She smiles. She keeps it all together.
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And then she gets home, with me, and she’s in her safe place. She settles. I never know what it will take. It can be me making her a snack {the wrong snack}, or asking her to put her shoes on, or brush her hair. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
And, BANG. She explodes. She can no longer hold it together.
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Like this morning.
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I am her safe place. The target of all her withheld emotions, anger, sadness, anxiety, worry, and frustration. I know it’s coming, because it’s always coming, but when it hits, I’m never ready. I get mad at myself. Why aren’t I ever ready? {To be honest, I don’t even know what being ready would look or feel like}.
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I comfort her. I raise my voice. I cuddle her. I distract her. I just take it. I wait for it to pass. And when she leaves the room, I cry. I cry because I don’t think I can do it anymore, but I know I will. I know I’ll breathe, and wake up the next day and possibly do it all again. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I am her safe place. I am sad she even needs a safe place {hello ADHD} but grateful she can keep it together for the rest of the world. Being her safe place is meant to be an honour, but it often feels like a burden. I am her safe place, necessary, exhausting and heart-breakingly so. I would choose to be her safe place time and time again, as much as it wears me down, because she chooses me. Needs me.
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I am her safe place, and probably always will be.

@Fatmumslim