Clouds, May 2010

Clouds, May 2010

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

the evolution of a snow day

The thing is when H was a baby & through his toddler years, I was often jealous of a babysitter, therapist, daycare teacher, or really anyone who spent time with my kid during the week (while I was at work). I think especially as a first-time parent, it's also difficult to see the logic in paying someone to take care of your precious offspring only because you are still in the fairytale phase of parenthood.

In other words, you only view interactions with your child as a privilege. In your mind people should be so lucky to do any daily activity with your kid-- whether playing with them or wiping their ass. Right? It's your kid laughing at that toy & you're not there to witness it. It's your kid who successfully produced a normal, bodily function & you are missing out on another fragment of their development... you're proud of that shit (pun intended) because it means they ate well & they're thriving. Whatever happens during the day, you're missing it, because you're at work. And every time you look at the computer with your wallpaper pic of this golden child, & you see their innocent face staring back at you.... you can barely smile without your eyes welling up. You miss them so.

And don't even get me started on nap time... ugh... that used to break my heart. How is it fair that someone else was with him. I wanted to be the first face he saw when he opened his eyes-- every day, any time of day. Pick him up... hold him... feel the warmth radiating off of him when he just woke up... & breathe in the smell of his sweet skin... especially the one side of his face damp from sleep-sweat... oh gosh... just beyond delicious.

Our babies... our precious little ones. Whether we have one to love or many to love... they're ours to love.

Well, one day, about 5 years later when they're in grade school & it's winter time in February, & you are home during a snow storm for the 50th time that calendar year-- (never mind the fact that it's less than 40 days into the new year, because somehow you're certain you've been home for 50 days--) & finally night falls, which means you're >this much< closer to the morning, & therefore >this much< closer to sending your kid off to school for the day... finally...

When the phone rings.

Before we discuss who is calling, let's put this in perspective. Because that fairytale phase of parenthood was sometime in your former life. You might still be happy when your kid is playing, but more so if they're doing well at it on their own. And don't even get me started on nap time... it still breaks your heart but now more so because you are desperate for a window of peace & quiet. To make matters worse, somewhere along the way their sweat turned from sweet to swampy.

So back to the present. It's feeling like day 50 of being snowed in, but finally the light is at the end of the tunnel because your child is only hours away from returning to school, & your phone rings. A very annoying, automated, female voice dictates an introduction that you know by heart-- yet you can not bypass-- & it takes her an eternity to explain that blah blah school district will be on a 2-hour delay & she will speak tomorrow's date in the longest, most drawn-out formal way humanly possible... including the day of the week, month of the year, date of the month, & eventually conclude with "two thousand and fourteen"... but wait... you still can not hang up, because you actually have to press 1 to hear the message. You still have not heard the damn message.

When you finally think this condescending torture is over, Mrs. Automated Anal Retentive says you have to press 1 to acknowledge this message or press 2 to hear it again... & that's when you go from angry to desperate.

And you realize you would pay double-- heck, triple-- for a babysitter, therapist, daycare teacher, or really anyone who's not currently in jail... to spend just one day with your kid so you can leave your house, drive to work, sit at your desk, stare at the computer... which has a wallpaper pic of your precious offspring, & you see their innocent face staring back at you... you can barely smile without your eyes welling up. Because you are THANKFUL.

You have HOURS until you need to tend to their needs. And until then, this is YOUR time.


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