Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A New Perspective

I’m feeling a bit wishy-washy these days because I want things that are totally opposite. Since my kids are getting older I’m trying to carve a little time in the day just for me-I’m not asking for hours here, just minutes where I can pursue activities that interest just me. I sometimes think about all the things I do for them now that I won’t have to do when their older, like make their breakfast and lunch, do their laundry, supervise all bathing/teeth brushing/hair combing, and help them clean their rooms (this one always stumps me-if they can mess it up, why does it take mom or dad’s assistance to clean things up?) I am rarely ALONE!

Then, if by chance I do get a few precious minutes, I start to feel like I’m missing something-that if I don’t stop what I’m doing and connect with my kids their childhood years will just fly by and I will have missed them. I’m already experiencing the twangs of separation with some of my kids changing habits. A year ago, my son would always give me a hug and a kiss at bedtime, and we would go through the same ritual every night:

"Goodnight Mom."
"Goodnight Buster Brown."
"I love you."
"I love you too."
"See you in the morning."
"I’ll see you in the morning."

Now that little ritual is gone, and although I still give him a kiss, I guess I have cooties, because there are cries of “Yuck!” as he tries to wipe his cheek. I still get a hug, and he always hugs me before I leave in the morning, but how long will this last?

My daughter is physically connected to her electronic devices, and spending more and more time in her room. I’ve had to establish times when devices are off and although I can usually coax her to help me make dinner or bake, gone are the days when she followed me around telling me about her day. (The girl is a virtual vault these days, and I only know something is bothering her when that mouth of hers starts working over time…)

I’m constantly stretched in different directions-grow up, don’t grow up, please grow up, please don't grow up-but now I know what alone feels like. My husband’s grandmother died Saturday night, and since I don’t get bereavement unless it’s someone in my immediate family, my husband took the kids and headed five hours away to my in-laws house. I got what I’ve always wanted-plenty of kid free me time, and I hate it! I didn’t make dinner since it was just me (I had an egg sandwich and fruit), and I can’t seem to be able to sit in one spot (I finally managed to plant myself in front of the computer to type this, and even then I didn’t feel like doing too much.)I've texted my daughter all evening (the most we've talked in a while) and both my kids sounded so small when I talked to them on the phone tonight...

I’m so worried about their drive back tomorrow and about how the kids are handling their first funeral that I can hardly keep my eyes open-and after dealing with teenagers all day, I'm emotionally drained. So that being said, I’m heading to bed knowing I better be careful what I wish for…


  1. Sorry about your husband's grandmother. I can relate to your feelings about finding time for you. I also feel like I'm peripheral sometimes for the kids. Lately, I try to get in 2 minute conversations with my 14 year old when he lifts his head from the laptop or video game. All those 2 minute mini conversations seem to be adding up to a kind of decent conversation. I'll take what I can get. Hugs and I'll talk to you soon :) - Kel

  2. I kind of know the feeling. I admit I deeply enjoy my alone time but it's been a very long time since I had much of it. At the same time, just this morning I had a twinge when my 15 year old got out of the car without even saying goodbye. I still miss my goodbye morning hugs and get a really nice feeling when I've been talking with my girls and start to leave the room and they say "no, stay and talk some more." They are older than yours and I think that comes back a little. The texting can be a good resource. I have had long conversations with my kids while they were out with friends when they barely spoke to me at home. Sometimes I text them something silly when they are in the house with me and we have a private silly session in separate rooms.

    I hope you are feeling a little more full today. Our own families can drain us sometimes but a room full of other peoples teenagers? Lord help you!

  3. Please accept my condolences on your loss.

    I understand all you are feeling. I have two grown and successfully launched, and kidlet #3 is one year away from college. I don't know whether to break out the champagne or sit down and cry. It is a double edged sword!

  4. I used to get up really early to get some alone time so that when the kids were around, I could hang with them. It seems like they were there and gone within the blink of an eye.

    Even though the kisses and hugs lessen as they get older, you're there and they know it and believe me, they like it. :)

  5. I suppose divorcing my children's dad helped me to detach from my children when they'd go there for the every other weekend thing. I tried not to feel guilty when I'd so enjoy being alone. Someone helped me get over that when they said you have to take care of yourself, otherwise you're no good for your children. As a single parent, I longed for Empty Nest (probably to the point of making my children feel bad) but they still want me around even now that they are all gone... well sort of. But I totally get what you're saying.


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