A crazy, wonderful magical thing has happened for the first time in 18 years, Christopher and I find ourselves alone! ALONE! I'm not sure what wonderful thing that we have done to deserve this, but we are basking in it. I feel like at this point in order to "appear to be a good mother" I need to put in the disclaimer that I adore my kids. To those of you who read this little blog of mine on a regular basis, you know that I have committed my whole self, my whole soul to raising my children. I am devoted to my kids. Having said that ... that is a lot of energy. I did not know exactly how much energy I put into those kids until I had none.
How did this magic arrive you may ask. Did you have incriminating black mail photos to ensure your freedom (no but it's definitely something to think about for next year) you may ask yourself. Here's how it went down.... we live in Tweed, and do not see Christopher's family as much as we would like to, and for sure not nearly as much as the kids would like to. It's a three and a half hour drive, which in the big scheme of things is not much, but Christopher has no set schedule, and gas right now is crazy expensive. The kids really miss their Grandma, my parents are amazing and we see them nearly daily, but they still want that closeness with their Daddy's Mom. Christopher made the call and asked his Mom if she would like to take the the kids for a few days. It worked out that Cheri, Christopher's oldest sister took Grace, Doreen (Christopher's Mom) took Riley and Rowan. Elly was too little to be away from us that long. My Mom and Dad bought a new tent trailer this summer and were going camping the same week that the kids were all headed up to Halton Hills. My parents felt badly that the big kids were all having a fun adventure and Elly was going to be all alone (by all alone kidless). They asked if they could take Elly camping with them. They hadn't even finished could we take Elly when I interrupted and shouted out "YES"!
This has left Christopher and I with the house to ourselves for four days. Quiet has never sounded so sweet. Our original plan was to re-do Riley's room while she was gone, we even went so far as to promise her. Right now Riley has a Disney Princess room, which is really pretty, but apparently not what a now 9 year old desires. We had totally planned to throw ourselves into the job, that is until we tasted freedom.
Tuesday we drove the kids to Acton. We had a little visit and then headed home. On the way we stopped at Ikea. It is amazing what good time that you can make in Ikea when you are not worried, and constantly doing a head count. After Ikea, we had lunch at the On Route, not glamourous but time efficient. It is quite amazing how little it costs to just feed 2 instead of 6. We got into Tweed in good time and decided to stop off and pick up a DVD to rent. We were able to watch an entire DVD without having to stop it once to deal with one of the kids.
Wednesday Christopher worked. I was really going to make some headway in Riley's room. I just had to go to the dentist first. I then stopped in Marmora to have lunch with Christopher. By the time I finally got home there was not much time left until Christopher would be arriving home. I quickly cleaned the house. It really doesn't get that dirty with two people. We went out for dinner. I got to eat a hot meal! I did not have to cut anyone's meat (although at one point I was tempted out of habit to reach over and cut Christopher's). At no point did I need to remind anyone that they needed to be using good table manners. We ate a hot meal and talked. We then got home just in time for my friends to arrive. It seemed like a good night to have them over. While I visited with my friends Christopher worked upstairs in Riley's room. After my friends had headed home (when we reach 40, 10:00 is the time that you head home), and Christopher and I watched another movie, again with no distractions.
Thursday I awoke to the smell of bacon and coffee. I am not sure if there is a better smell to wake up to. Christopher had to work an evening shift and we had the day together. We enjoyed bacon and eggs and hash browns. "We should really get to work on Riley's room today". Christopher said half heartedly. "Orrrrrrrr, we could skip into Belleville and go to see Wolverine". Guess which one we picked? He went to work, and I relaxed. Yes, I should have been up working in Riley's room, but I mean how often do I have complete control of the remote control? How often can I go on the computer for as long as I want? So I did not work on Riley's room. Christopher got home around 9:30, we had a late dinner, and watched another DVD.
That brings us to today. I would have thought that I would have no idea what to do with myself, but I do. Today I have been cleaning and doing laundry. I know that I should be up working on Riley's room, but this is my last day of freedom, and who knows if I will ever get another.
So here is what I have learned..... Christopher and I have always wondered if we will still enjoy each other after the kids have left home. We have built our lives around our children for the last almost 19 years. We have discovered that we were friends before we ever dated, and that friendship has stayed in tact. We really enjoy each other's company. We will fare just fine when the kids go. I have learned that it's ok to just relax and enjoy the freedom of being childless. It's o.k. to enjoy it, there is no need for guilt in that. I think that these few days will actually make us more loving and more tolerant parents when the kids get home. I have learned that no matter how much work they may be, and no matter how much I may yell, I really do LOVE my kids. I miss them. It has not been a debilitating missing, more of a knowledge that something really big is missing from my life right now. I know that when we go to get them tonight I will hug them so tightly that they will beg for air. I know that if Christopher and I put the kids to bed and decide to watch a movie, we will have to stop it no less than 10 times. I know that tonight as I lay in bed, I will feel whole again. I have enjoyed my time with just Christopher, but I am a mom above all else.