I never fully understood how important time off is for a full time mother until my wife showed me.
She was longing for a haircut and her hair dyed to somehow hide the evidence of the passing years. She never had the time to visit the parlor though because we don’t have house help. And though I’m more than willing to stay home and tend to the kids while she’s away, she’d be conscience-stricken leaving the kids for a while and she knows also that I’ve already had a lot for the past week that I deserve some rest and so she would just smile and brush off the idea.
But I always see pain in her eyes whenever I see that smile. It stabs my heart inch by inch, the scarcity of words making it more poignant.
Thankfully my mother came over to offer us help. Not a permanent one though but it’d be a temporary sigh of relief especially for my wife. If given the choice however, I’d rather stay at home but she asked me to accompany her and so we both went to the parlor one weekend.
As she was seated in front of the mirror while the pungent-smelling chemicals treat her hair and scalp, I came over to tell her I already miss the kids. Her answer was brief and crisp, sharper than Saint Michael’s double-edged sword shutting me up instantly:
“I need to have this time for myself so that I’ll still have something to give my children.”
Fuck. The onions were too strong.