26 May 2009

A Parenting Vacation - Learning to Miss a 4-Year-Old

Conner is on vacation.

I am on a vacation from Conner.

Chase is taking a vacation with me away from Conner.

Conner is currently spending 4 whole days with his Nana, during which time I will be the keeper of one (note: I did not say mother of one - BOOWOOHOO! WHERE IS MY BAAAABBBBYYY). 

It's odd, really. This is the first time I've ever dropped Conner off some place that A) doesn't charge me by the hour or B) will not keep him for longer than a typical business day. In short: I'm kinda at a loss.

Tonight, it's JUST Chase, Michael and I. When he went to the living room to watch his nightly dose of Blue's Clues, Michael and I turned the channel to something other than a (child appropriate) cartoon (note: I didn't just say cartoon - Michael loves Family Guy, Futurama and American Dad ... and I guess I should also note that he loves the Penguins of Madagascar... which IS a children's cartoon, but he likes it more than they do... digression set to occur... now).

And... and...Well? Nothing. It's just quiet.

Chase is sick (A-FREAKING-GAIN? YES! How? I have no clue, really) and so he drank his juice. No one pushed his chair over, stole his cup or blocked his view. At bed time, Chase got hugs from mommy and daddy, gave his typical goodnight kisses to both of us and went to bed.

Michael and I are sitting here, watching FoxNews (and Family Guy...) and it's 10:44 PM. No Conner. No "belly bumps" (full-on tackles), someone kicking me in the side, or telling me about his light sabers, dinosaurs or dreams of slaying dinosaurs with light sabers. There's no one to yank off my glasses only to do a "hard 3" on the cold bathroom floor. I didn't watch him brush his teeth and then "check" his teeth (Me: Ok... soo... *with brush in hand and in his mouth*, I see the top right is good *brush*, the top left is good *brush*, the bottom right is good *brush* and the bottom left is good *brush*... GREAT JOB!). The house feels so strange.

It is so strange, and I miss him.

I planned out this "vacation" for Conner to get some quality time away from his brother. To miss me and to go more than 3 minutes without doing something that earns himself a spanking, some time out and me wishing he were someone else's child.

For Chase, this vacation is to taste what it's like to have a mom, a dad, two dogs and no one that wants to body slam his face into the kitchen grout. 

For Michael, this is a glimmer of what it's like to gain his bed back (aside from the dogs.... and myself...). He can get up all 15 trillion times to do... whatever that is he does... in the bathroom at night (I think he's peeing, but he could be Toilet Sleeping) and not worry about waking Conner.

I am gaining back my sanity and my voice. I am going to recollect my Mothering Senses and pull together a Plan of Action directed right at my favorite little trouble maker. In all, I am going to remind myself what it means to actually miss my eldest child, try to store this feeling in my brain for all those times I am ready to Craigslist him, and remember all the wonderful things about his presence that makes this house our home. This is good for all of us and I am both so happy and sad about it.

Already, I miss him. That's a good sign. 

5 comments:

  1. you're a better woman than I... I couldn't to it (yet anyway)...good luck!

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  2. You are brilliant! Truly! I do okay thus far with a few hours away from Caro, but I can see with age and whatnot that some time apart in the future is going to be a must-do. Of course, I still like the craigslist idea myself. :)

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  3. Sounds like someone might be "planning" something else. *wink wink wink* Hehehe. I'm just sayin

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  4. We have never done that - separate the boys for longer than an hour or two. What a great idea!

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  5. Alyssa and Noah have only be seperated once (other than at school). That was during the weekend of Alyssa's pageant a few months ago. She stayed with me and Noah went to his Dad's house. They both cried for each other. Its so funny cause they are always fighting but seperate them and they don't know how to live. I am about to have to go almost a month without them. Their Dad claims he is actually going to keep them his entire month this summer. They will come home twice (once for Alyssa's 5 year old checkup and once because we were going to the beach but now we are staying at home for her pageant). I am going to go crazy. I'll probably spend most of my days crying cause I lose it when they are gone for a week to his house after Christmas.

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