Acceptable and unacceptable blood

Acceptable and unacceptable blood
“Do it yourself”, I say.

“Just go play.”

I wish he were big and independent already.

“Quit whining.”
“Don’t be such a wimp.”
“Blood isn’t that bad. That will heal nicely.”

I think my empathy and worrying mother’s heart are hard to find.

But there they are:

Someone hurts his heart.
Deep down I feel a raging hurricane coming up, aimed at the cause of his sadness.

Blood that seeps out of your skin? You’ll be fine.

Blood seeping out of your heart? That’s serious business we’re talking about.

I want to hold him close.
As if I can stop all the pain this world can give from touching him.
As if I can protect him this way.

Still, I force myself to loosen my arms, pushing him out into the wide world every time again.

I feel my eyebrows wrinkle up with worry, feeling his pain deep within me.

All the pain I have ever felt comes floating up like black oil in clear water. Am I worrying about his pain or mine now?

My eyes follow him as he goes on, each step taking him a little farther into a part of the world. Without me.

Because I do know that a little blood in your heart won’t kill you.

And still.

Come here, let me wrap your arms around you. And I’ll never let you go.

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