A Saturday.  Another one, spent with only each other…

We’ve been without husband or MIL now for weeks and days, respectively.  I know they are missed, and it is novel to have this time just to ourselves again.

It’s funny, living as a family apart for so long and then merging back together again is still, even months later, like trying to relearn how to be a family in so many ways.  Who guides the children when certain situations come up, how can we work around work schedules and sleep schedules intuitively, how many meals-to-go need to be prepared, who intervenes the unprovoked wrestling match when we’re both in the middle, when will I get some “me” time to ride my bike at the lake?

Somehow, that last one is extra tricky for me.  When I’m alone, I expect to be the sun and moon, 24/7.   No biggie, pace yourself, no expectation of down time or pure free time.  Being with the kids *is* my free time.

But somehow I tend to get my undies in a knot when we’re both home and I don’t have a broad breakdown of a schedule to work around, no moment I can reserve and look forward to and go fill my tank.  Why do I need that when we’re together but not when I’m alone?  I guess that’s the trick about having a ferociously busy and entrepreneurial husband and being an introvert then, huh?

When you’re parenting solo , a dynamic changes.  I’m still trying to figure out how to capture the essence of it on any other day-in-the-life we have because it can be so sweet.

On a day alone with these boys, I am the sun and these small and medium sized planets circle in erratic ellipses around me throughout the course of the day.  Out to the sandpile and back, down two driveways and then back, into the garage and back, into the TV and then back.

Always back to me.  To cry, to complain, to request, to display, to snuggle.

There is no one else to get permission from, no one else to entertain them, no one else to pull them off of each other, no one whose work to innocently disrupt with the pure desire just to BE together and connect, or to exasperate at 4:30 AM with PLEEEEEASE can we put the Christmas Tree up now {squeal!!!}!?!?!

And so this sweet Saturday goes like the last one.   One where there is but one person accountable for our children.  For better or for worse.  For crazy-making and for sweet kisses and snuggles.  One where every meal, snack, diaper change, clothes change, sweater reminder, smooshed raspberry in the carpet and response to, “Mom!!  Watch what I can do!” is my department.

I miss my sweet husband and thoughtful Mother-in-Law.   I know our boys do.  It will be so good to have them back.

And on these sweet obligation-free Saturdays, I love my department.


4 responses to “saturday

  1. I’m admiring your devotion as a Mom, Bee. When you were a little girl, I noticed your Mom needed at least one hour a day to herself, in order to keep her tank filled. It was amazing. She would leave exhausted, and return an hour later all rejuvenated, aching to hold her babies again and find out what she had missed during the hour! I hope you can find the time you need to keep your batteries charged!

  2. Hi Ginger! These blogs are very sweet. I’m printing it out for Mom. We love you! Joy and Great-Grandma Flynn

  3. I love your honesty, Bee. It is definitely a pacing issue, and a challenge to not allow yourself to feel isolated. But it is a season for you–a time that will stretch you but that you’ll always be thankful you could be there for your boys. Love you Ging!

  4. Kurt traveled a fair amount when the boys were little. That’s when I had to mentally “gear up” to be the sole parent for days, sometimes weeks, at a time. Since we didn’t have any family nearby, I learned to rely on friends to help out if needed, and they were always so great about it.
    When my kids were 3 and 2, I was diagnosed with Graves Disease (hyperthyroid) and had to stay in a hotel for at least 48 hours away from anyone else because I was treated with radioactive iodine, and it took that long before it was safe to be around anyone else again. The day my family picked me up at the hotel, the boys were visibly ticked off at me and wouldn’t even give me a hug — where had I gone for so long? Why had I abandoned them? I had never been gone that long before, and it took a couple of days before the clinginess stopped and they realized I wasn’t leaving again.
    When the boys were around 5 and 6, Kurt took them on a “guys weekend”. They stayed in a hotel with a pool, and it was just the three of them all weekend. When they returned home, I had to laugh when they walked in the door. Kurt had a dazed look on his face, like he had just been through a war. I asked him how it went, and he said, “Well, we lost all of our swimming suits, and I think I left 100 bucks in the room somewhere…” Boy, could I relate! When you have two other precious human beings to be solely responsible for, a lot of your normal brain functions fly out the window.
    The good news is that kids really do grow up eventually. Now that they’ve grown up, it’s amazing how fast the time has gone. Cherish every minute!

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