Its almost 10 pm, and I'm writing this waiting for Noah to wake for the inevitable feed. He's been stirring for about 1/2 hour and I keep putting off starting things in case I need to rush up stairs to quell the wailing and try and keep Jamie from waking too. ah the joys of a small house...
I should mention that tonight is the first since you've been away that both children have been asleep for much of the early part of the evening somewhere not on me....no, wait. that's unfair to J, who has risen to the increased sense of responsibility attached to 'helping Mummy' this week with great success and has settled down for each night like a star, tonight saying with a shy grin and a roll of his eyes at his own perceived silliness 'oh, I thought this was a Daddy night, but Daddy's too far to reach my bed!' We miss you.
I also want it noted here that this is the first night that I have been alone in putting the children to bed. I'm quite (read: very) proud really. Tonight my children are both in bed and asleep, and have been since 7.30, tomorrow world peace. yeah. I simply can't imagine how single parents manage to stay sane and raise happy children. Seriously. Its been 3 days for me, and one night without a support posse and I feel like I must be, well, only the best parent ever to have accomplished such a huge feet, but that's quite enough now. You can come home.
Today was bright and crisp, and made me glad to be here so close to the country side, and a little less regretful not to be in Belize or New Zealand. We walked down to the river with Sal and Kacey and fed the ducks again. Jamie is a little baffled as to why Kacey doesn't share his total, all consuming passion for playing in dirt. I hope he can find a friend in a girl some time who does want to dig with him, and doesn't get sucked into the blinkered world of gender stereotyping at 3. I already see it beginning and it makes me sad. Ah well... much time and many new friends as yet un-met.
The weather held until after pre-school, so we wandered to the park, where my adult lack of attention span and cold fingers moved him on much sooner than he would have liked. I wish I could be more in the moment as a parent. I wonder if the need of some parents to keep things moving, be on to the next project at lightening speed to try and stave off their (well, my) own self indulgent boredom or juggle one too many distraction contributes to the growing number of children who have difficulty concentrating or experience high levels of stress..? One for the 'interesting future research topics' bin. All to say I'm trying to be slower and more present...
Still no desperate cries of hunger from Noah. Its funny, in a kinda depressing, neurotic way, how we either switch between desperation for our infant offspring to sleep for more than 10 minutes on their own, and thinly disguised panic that, when they haven't demanded our immediate attention for 11.5 minutes they must be ill, irreversibly maladjusted or dead. Oh. there he goes. phew. Damn.
So I'm off to bed, strangely reluctantly given how tired I am. Its just that I know this is the end of quiet time for another 24 hours, there are bottles to be done before I can go up, Noah will likely be up again in 2 hours and sleep is always a little lighter, more unsettled with you not here.
So, in a nut shell, things I have loved and loathed in our week without you thus far..
No loved so much...
- Adult worries compound themselves with no one else to act as a sounding board and a voice of reason and perspective
- Tired Jamie, tired Noah, tired Mummy, supper still to be made.
- Two nights of every two hour waking
- 6 am mornings
- Always something else to be done
- No warm body in the bed
- Baby missing you, squirmy and restless
- Realising how ill prepared I am if something electrical or technical goes wrong in the house...(see list below)
- Getting totally, embarrassingly lost on the drive back from London
- Feeling a little bit guilty about Bob the Builder this evening (why is it parents aren't allowed a break once in a while from constant stimulating and educating their children without feeling guilty?? - see below again!)
- The lack of just you.
- Bob the Builder
- Jamie going to the counter in the coffee shop by himself today and asking 'excuse me, can I please have two napkins?'
- The clear, spring-like weather, and the crocuses, birds and buds on the trees
- Seeing that the goldfish in the sluis pond at the river, that someone seems to have released there and that I was sure would have perished by now have in fact multiplied!!
- The gusto with which Noah embraces pureed carrot, and the surprising ease with which it seems to come off the newly painted walls...
- Reading in bed tonight with Jamie after Noah had gone to sleep.
- Carrying Noah around Yeovil in the sling after accidentally forgetting the pushchair
- A small feeling of comfort knowing that everything electrical or technical that could go wrong in the house is probably already not working (see list above)
- Yesterdays squash and today's chickpea curry.
- The big family bath tonight.
- Jamie's walking to pre-school today spotting shapes in the clouds.
Come home soon.