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Remembering What’s Important

It’s easy to get bogged down in the day to day, forgetting what matters most…intellectually, I know that my children and my family are what matters most…the people I love matter…but it’s easy to take that for granted – until you’re reminded…

This week, for the first time in my life, I feared for my children…I’ve been nervous before…I’ve been anxious, worried, stressed before…I’ve never feared for them…thankfully, they were ultimately fine, but I spent a nervous night wondering if I had made a horrible decision leaving them in the care of their now ex-babysitter…if you’re going to go all crazy on me, I’m going to assume you’ll do it with my children…if you’re going to make unreasonable demands of me, I’m going to assume that you’ll do that to my children…once I lose trust in you, there’s no way you can be around my children…that’s just how I roll…

It’s a long, dramatic story that ended up fine…for various reasons – Mom #2 being the main reason…I’m not sure what I would do without her sometimes…but, for the first time since I began travelling for work, I was ready to go home because I needed to hug my babies tight…I needed to feel their warm little bodies close to me…I needed to see for myself that they were fine…

Sunday, I came home and their excitement to see me was contagious…I bravely decided we would go out to dinner…just the three of us…we survived…sort of…Sean has a new habit of telling me he needs to use the potty, requiring that I take him to the bathroom, only to sit down and then say he’s “done” when he never did anything in the first place…thanks, dude…this immediately requires washing of hands, because, well, ew, gross! Aidan likes to make paper airplanes out of his place mat, but I get to be the one who threatens his life if he throws it…

The fun didn’t stop there…because I effectively fired my babysitter, I had no childcare on Monday – Veteran’s Day…schools were closed and so were daycares…we’re doing this wrong, I think…I worked from home…well, I struggled to concentrate on the task at hand while mini tornadoes tore through my house for about 8 hours, but let’s call it work…fun times…fun. times.

My eye started twitching around 3:00 p.m…I haven’t been so happy to go into the office in a long time…but despite all the insanity, the whining, the crying, the punching, the wrestling, the tearing apart of my clean house, I noticed a difference in myself…I signed up to attend Aidan’s Thanksgiving lunch at school…which means I’ll attend Sean’s (gotta be fair, you know)…Santa is coming to the mall this Saturday, and I asked the boys if they would like to go…by the way, a resounding, “YES!!!” on that one…

I’m so happy to be back with them (despite the twitch I’ve developed every time one of the boys says, “Tell me to fart!”) that I’m taking advantage of opportunities to spend time with them…if this had been a “normal” trip away, I would have dreaded coming home to the routine…I would have dreaded the return to their normal selves after the excitement of my return wore off…that didn’t happen this time…this time, I was forced to remember what’s important…I hate that I spent even one moment afraid for my children…but I’m happy that my perspective was forced to change a bit…

Daycare vs. Home

There’s a battle going on with Sean…the battle between daycare and home.  God, I hope daycare wins…

At daycare, Sean will…

  • Wear big boy underwear (Thomas, of course)
  • Use the big boy potty – with little to no help
  • Drink from a cup (with no straw)
  • Drink water
  • Eat carrots
  • Say his shapes, colors, and ABCs
  • Play with something other than a Thomas toy

At home, Sean will..,

  • Only wear diapers or Pull-Ups
  • Refuse to use the potty, even his Cars potty, and cry when I ask him to try
  • Only use his cup with a lid and a straw, unless the sippy cup is available
  • Drink only juice, chocolate milk if I bribe him
  • Eat PopTarts, bananas, or whatever I’m having
  • Refuse to say his shapes, colors, or ABCs…and pretend that green is red and that blue is purple
  • Play with Thomas, while watching Thomas, while listening to a Thomas story and making up a Thomas story while he’s playing with Thomas…”Wheel-turn by wheel-turn, Thomas chuffed away, Mommy…”

I think I’m going to let the daycare win this one…they seem to be raising a fine young man!

Separated at Birth or Serial Killer?

So I think I met a sister I never knew I had today…all I wanted to do was find child care for Sean so that when we move, I know where he’s going to be…when all the traditional options for daycare didn’t pan out – if it’s going to cost me DOUBLE to put the boys in daycare and after-school care, then there’s no savings to moving closer to work – I started looking at less traditional methods.

After a lot of long talks with myself about intuition and trusting my gut, I went to Craigslist…and yes, I know, EVERYONE knows a horror story about Craigslist…but if it didn’t work for the majority of people, it would never have lasted this long, right?  And I’m a pretty good judge of people (The Ex, notwithstanding) and I know when my instinct tells me something isn’t right…

So I combed the childcare posts, literally letting my gut guide me on which one’s to even respond to for more information…I bypassed a LOT of them…surprisingly, the ones that sounded the most professional were the people who either never got back to me or took forever….really?!  I came across two that gave a cell phone number and an offer to text or call – since I don’t like talking to people I don’t know, I was more than willing to text them…both responded, but only one was friendly…

Ok, don’t get me wrong, I know the crazy psycho-killers pretend to be really nice before they chop your head off…I get it…but even through text, I got a good vibe…we chatted about all sorts of things for more than an hour…that was last week…this week, I made a point to find out where she lives and go meet her…

And I think we were separated at birth (but don’t tell our mothers)…she’s a year older than me, we’re both Scorpios (read: stereotypical Scorpios), and we have way too much in common…and it wasn’t one of those freaky, scary movie scenes, where I say everything about myself, and she just responds with, “Me too!”  I was the one saying, “Me too!!” the whole time.  I even liked her dogs!

Same favorite color, same favorite stores, same philosophies on parenting (not all – but only because we didn’t have time to discuss them all), same laugh – that’s terrifying, same personality (to a certain extent)…we started talking about school – I went to college, she didn’t get the chance because she got pregnant – but we both love to learn…we both love to write…we’re both addicted to Facebook…we’re both tech geeks (her’s is more with equipment, mine is more on what that equipment can do)…we talked about shopping…we remembered, eventually, to talk about our children…

I told her that I considered asking her if she was a serial killer…she even gets my humor…oh yeah, and we’re both sarcastic as hell…

So now I have to decide – is liking her a good enough reason to leave a small child in her care?

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