I remember stalking my husband - home or away - in those early months of maternity leave, furious if he arrived home from work any more than thirty seconds later than my psychotic, sleep-deprived brain expected him to. If he stayed in the bathroom "too long" I would check my watch and glare at him when he rejoined us anywhere from 10-25 minutes later. How dare he take care of his personal business! He didn't even ask if he could take the baby with him... Yes, these were some of my crazy, crazy thoughts.
Back then, of course, Dallas was an infant. At three and a half months old, I was still in the constantly-checking-to-make-sure-he's-still-breathing mode and wouldn't leave the room during a meal for fear that he might choke on the macaroni and cheese I had already cut into microscopic pieces. Yeah, I was a real nut bag. Since then, though, things are a bit different. I've given myself permission to leave him inside the house while I start the car when it's cold or walk to the mailbox. And now that he's got a full mouth of teeth, I'm done cutting his damn grapes in half. He'll either learn to chew his food well enough or experience mommy's makeshift Heimlich. I really should have taken that CPR class...
Anyway, this week we have been settling in to our new home down south. It has been a long, long several weeks of packing up the old house, cleaning the old house, living out of suitcases, eating out, driving 700 miles, sleeping on air mattresses, tripping over boxes and unpacking all of that same crap from the old house into a new (rental, don't get excited) house all while trying to work with my now three-year-old son along for the ride, obviously. Last week I took a conference call in a laundromat. Why? Because after you have been without your washer and dryer for a week and driven 700 miles in 90 degree heat, your family needs clean clothes as much as you need to be on that conference call.
What I didn't truly anticipate, though, was the pure insanity that is being with my beautiful, crazy stubborn three-year-old all day, everyday for three straight weeks. No breaks, no babysitters, no naps. Nope...just all three of us. Together. All day. Doing things. Making moves. Driving around. Eating goldfish. Drinking apple juice. Watching Paw Patrol. Jumping across the couch. Going to the park. Not wanting to actually play at the park because he has to poop. Blowing bubbles in the front yard. Playing T-ball. Now I pitch him the ball. Blowing bubbles on the back deck. Riding the tricycle that he can't quite peddle correctly. Getting frustrated, because of the peddling. Throwing tantrums. Throwing shoes and puzzle pieces and the iPad. Wanting to drive his motorized truck...and then being scared to drive his motorized truck. Crying that his motorized truck is too fast. Going inside the house. Going back outside. Going inside again. Doing his letter puzzle. Losing the "W" to his letter puzzle. We still can't find it, which is driving me ABSOLUTELY F-ING CRAZY!!!!! Remember that Family Guy commercial where Stewy says, "Mommy, mommy, mommy" over and over again? Kids really do that shit. Not just on TV.
OK, so I may have had some breaks. But they are work "breaks" not days at the spa. However, Jason is here through it all. He cuts the grass and goes to Target, but yeah, also not actual breaks. Every single conversation he and I have tried to have between 7am and 8pm for the last three weeks has been interrupted with "Mommy" or "Daddy" said thirty-seven times, or the all too famous "Excuse me" which sounds all cute and polite, but is just another means to interrupt if you're not going to WAIT UNTIL YOU ARE ACTUALLY INVITED TO SPEAK! So yes, we are tired, tired people.
What we needed was a three-week road nanny. But let's be honest. That probably doesn't exist and even if care.com could hook that up, ain't nobody got money for that.
And hey, we're here now and so is our stuff. We've got beds and dishes and other business, so it's mostly all good. This Monday begins a new chapter for Dallas. He starts a new preschool with new teachers and friends. We stopped by to meet everyone today and it seems like it's going to be a great place! We are both so excited for him. And it will give us (AKA his stressed out, wound up parents) an opportunity to get our lives together and fill up that patience reserve. Win win!
Stay sane and let's get these kids back to school!