“Love means never having to say you’re sorry.”

Clearly this is misleading. I feel like I am constantly apologizing to my husband, my family and my friends. I don’t suppose being Canadian either helps the situation at all.

Honestly, if I could go back and rewrite my vows, this would be the only one I would want.

I understand the importance of the words but the struggle has always been to say them.

This has been the rule in our house since the kids were old enough to grasp the concept of asking for forgiveness. “If you are brave enough to hurt someone’s feelings, then you also must be brave enough to tell them you are sorry.” The words matter, of course, but not unless accompanied by action. You must look the person in the eye and say, “I’m sorry”. Oh in theory, that is a wonderful concept. However it can get somewhat impractical as kids grow up. Ryan was the King of Mumblers and Master of Snide Apologies. True titles.

Apparently I was unclear on how these pleas for forgiveness were to be delivered. Therefore I needed to adjust the qualifications.

1) Look into the other persons’ eyes. Do not roll yours.

2) Apologize with sincerity. Telling someone you are sorry they are stupid is considered a breach of apology etiquette.

I never expected my children to follow such a rule without both Scott and I also complying.

There was a time that Ryan was 5 and Jordyn was 2. We were in our old house and I could hear Jordyn screaming. The sound, high pitched and shrill, surely brought dogs to the yard. I rush into her bedroom to find what looked like Ryan holding her captive in the closet. My poor baby girl, traumatized and locked in a dark space. I will admit I lost my temper. I pulled Ryan off and gave him a quick spank on his bottom. The look of disbelief and utter hurt is forever etched in my mind.

I got it wrong.

Ryan hadn’t been trying to lock her in the closet. He was trying to keep the door open. Jordyn was the one who wanted the door closed and locked. It was the easiest apology I ever had to make and the hardest. I betrayed his trust by not taking a moment. A moment to see the situation as it truly was, not how I perceived it to be.

Lesson learned but at what cost?

Each day, I go out with the best of intentions and the purest of heart. I look and I search. Nothing matters more.

Each night, I return without what I need the most. And in the quiet of my room, I apologize.

“Ryan, I am sorry that I was unable to protect you. I’m sorry that I cannot take your place. I’m so sorry that I could not find you.”

It feels like I have betrayed him again.