**Participating in Mamakat’s writing workshop today: Write a post inspired by the word “flooded”.**
In the days leading up to the party Olivia is attending, I am a worker bee trying to get these special presents finished. The birthday girl is a very special friend; she has been so kind to my girl all of these years and I wanted to do something special. I am making her signs for her newly decorated rooms, bracelets made from walk-a-thon shirts, one for each year of school and also some makeup and nail polish for fun. I am frantically trying to get all of these made, make Halloween costumes, work and keep up with the house. I’m worried she won’t like them, that it’s not special enough, that it’s a stupid idea. It’s no wonder my husband thinks I’m crazy.
In the days leading up to the party, I am worried. Did this girl really want to invite Olivia or did her mom make her? Do the other girls want Olivia there? Will they ignore her? Will they include her? Will she drive everyone crazy? Will she make a mess? Will she eat something she’s not supposed to? Will she be OK with out me? Should I make an excuse and not send her just in case all of these things are true? If I can just keep her in my bubble, won’t that be better for her…and for me?
Two days before the party, we attend the Halloween party at school. She is alone at the party. No one wants to walk around with her. She walks up to several kids in her class and tries to hug them or say hello and they pretty much ignore her. Now I am convinced that she shouldn’t go to this party. She happily enjoys the Halloween event, watching the magician and enjoying everyone’s costumes. Why do I worry so much when she doesn’t?
The day of the party, I’m nervous. I’m afraid to send her even though I love this girl and her family. I’m afraid of the other girls. Many of these girls are not her good friends. Please let them be kind, I pray. Please let them include her, I beg. Please let her behave, I implore. Please let her have fun, I plead. Please let these girls see that she is fun, she is loving, she is the best friend they will ever have.
Please, please, please let her be loved. Please, please, please let her be loved.
I flood God’s inbox with my silent prayers. I drop her off at the party and slowly walk home trying not to cry. I saw Olivia go up to two girls she didn’t know and introduce herself and try to engage them. “Let’s play Just Dance!” she says. No one responds. I’m hoping they will just take a while to warm up to her. I don’t want to leave.
I make myself walk home. I am on the verge of tears. I am scared to leave her and hope it goes well. I get home and am alone. The boys are on a camping weekend. I eat dinner and watch T.V. and give myself a mani and a pedi and look at the clock every 5 seconds. I have my phone right next to me, waiting for the text to come get Olivia.
Finally, just as I predicted, she asks for me around 8 p.m. It’s a sleepover party but that’s not an option. I drive over there this time, anxious to get there as fast as I can. I knock on the door and open it to find that she’s surrounded by girls. They are laughing, they are telling me how much fun they all had and how much fun Olivia had. My heart unclenches and my shoulders relax. I can tell by my girl’s face that she is happy, she had a great time, she was loved.
This is life with Olivia. Constantly being flooded with emotions…good, bad and everything in between.