I don’t think it comes as any surprise to hear me say that parenting, thus far, has been a challenge for me. I find myself feeling like I’m constantly babysitting—rather than just including C in our family. I look at the clock, and count the hours until lunch, naptime, supper, or bedtime. I hear myself complaining, moaning, being sarcastic about the “joy” of little ones and longing for the days when I can just hang out by myself for an entire day. When people say, “They grow up too fast!” or “Don’t you wish you could keep them little forever?” I rarely can muster a whole-hearted agreement. After spending an entire week or two with C, I usually only want a break.
And that is why Mason & I are on “vacation” in the Northwoods of Wisconsin. My parents have Charlie for almost an entire week, while we have permission to basically do nothing. This is my chance to sleep in, lounge around, walk/ run, bike, shop, get a massage, cook nice meals, go out for dinner, and read books that aren’t made out of cardboard. I have been looking forward to this getaway for months. Every time C decides it’s fun to be awake from 4-6 am, I only wish I was far away from him. Every time he whines all day, or throws multiple tantrums, I envision myself handing him off to my mom and happily driving away.
But now, here I am, 500 miles away from the little stinker, and my heart is aching for him. It’s so quiet without his little voice and I’m so still--without having to follow him around as he gains confidence in walking. Our schedule is gone—I’ll eat and shower whenever I want –not when the opportunity presents itself—as is most often the case at home. It dawns on me now, how important these little get-aways are, because absence really does make the heart grow fonder. I have a feeling that when we finally see C again, we’ll be refreshed and re-energized, and ready to play with his little toddler toys for more than five minutes. And in order for that to happen, I need to relax and melt into this time with M.