Category: Mental health
The bedroom door creaks open, reminding Ava her mom is listening.
“Sweetheart,” mom says, “what’s wrong?”
“Nothing,” her ten-year-old, Ava, says through a forced smile as she walks across her room to hug her mom. “Everything is great. Can we go make pancakes?”
Ava loves her mom. For as long as Ava can remember, her mom has bent over backward to provide everything she needs. From staying up late sewing patches on her jeans to making sure every peanut butter sandwich in her lunch box is crustless and heart-shaped, Ava’s mom spends every hour of her exhausting day seeking ways to make Ava’s world brighter. Even though Ava doesn’t understand the depths of her mother’s responsibilities, she knows her mom’s ability to smile through exhaustion and mounting stress isn’t easy. Her mom deals with the loss of Ava’s dad, ever-present bills, and a day job that requires her to work until midnight.
There’s no way Ava is going to tell her mom about the bullies at school. She loves her mom too much to say something that will make her cry. Besides, her mom can’t magically change the bullies to empathetic people filled with kindness and goodwill.