Of Course I Want to See My Kids
Dr. Meghan Walls is a mom to two girls, a blogger, and a pediatric psychologist who is interested in primary care, public health, and knowledge translation to the community. She’s involved in a number of behavioral health-focused initiatives in an effort to focus on whole child wellness. As part of the Sandy Hook Promise Task force in Delaware, she assists schools within the Red Clay School district in implementing the Start with Hello programs. In her capacity as the the Campaign Lead for the Delaware Chapter of Moms Demand Action, supports campaigns with Gun sense Candidates of distinction across the state with the goal of safer communities.
It is no secret that my life these days is a mess of work, brew haha coffees, wrangling my kids into the right season of clothes, trying really hard to change our political environment, and traipsing around every community event I can talking to anyone who wants to listen.
I’ve heard a lot of “Do you sleep?” And “How do you do all of these things” and once in awhile, “How do you know that person?!” But, the other day, I was telling another mom that I was out for the second time that week in the evening and she replied, “Don’t you want to see your kids?”
I stuttered. Admittedly, I felt defensive. I put together a sentence about how I work part time and spend a lot of good quality time with my kids (which is true but not necessary). Later, I thought about how I wish I responded differently.
So to you- lady who asked if I want to see my kids- and to my kids themselves: Of course I want to see my kids.
I want to see my kids live and breathe on a planet that has clean water and clean air. I want to see my kids happily playing peek-a-boo with wildlife where local land is preserved. I want to see my kids frolic with our dog in crystal clear streams with fish darting under their feet. I want to see my kids grow up without species becoming extinct.
I want to see my kids pitter patter and giggle their way down the hallways in school without being afraid. I want to see my kids survive a school day. I want to see my kids thrive in public school where teachers are paid well and schools have the resources they need. I want to see my kids participate in social and emotional programs; I want to see my kids include others and be empathetic.
I want to see my kids live in a world where diversity is valued and honored. I want to see my kids understand that working hard to get to the top of the mountain is important, but that our hands held them out to start halfway up, while other kids haven’t even found the trail yet. I want to see my kids feel it’s normal and necessary to reach a hand back and help whoever is behind them. I want to see my kids think every kid deserves a chance, and that basic needs like a place to sleep and food to eat are human rights.
I want to see my kids grow up, have partners, and have babies. I want to see my my kids- my girls- have control of when they have those babies. I want to see my kids have rich, happy lives with people they love- no matter who they choose.
I want to see my kids eyes light up on election days when they are old enough to vote and have the chance to participate in our democracy. I want to see my kids choose leaders who are respectful and who we can respect. I want to see my kids and their generation be the catalyst.
So for the next 11 days before this election- and for every other day- I see you, girls. I see you in every single thing I do. I see you when I’m canvassing and I see you when I’m at work. I see you when I’m sitting in a meeting talking about mental health and when I’m at political fundraisers. I see you when I’m hand lettering quotes and when I’m brushing your hair and sending you off into the world every day. I see you as I run my hand across your sweet fluttering eye lashes when you’re already asleep when I get home. I see you when you run full speed at me and wrap your arms around me knocking me into the ground. And I want your world, the one you see when you’re my age, to be more fair and full of more goodness. The things I do are because I see you and all the other kids in our country, too.
Of course I want to see my kids. And I do.