A close friend of mine just had her first baby. She was laughing over the fact that every time she goes to take a shower her son starts crying and wants to be nursed. I laughed and said that almost every newborn baby I know cries right at dinner time and you never get to eat your food warm, or get seconds for that matter. I told her it gets better and said,
“I can now go pee by myself.”
“Ah, yes but can you close the door?” She returned. I laughed and said,
“No, she brings me books while I am sitting there.” I have actually had to explain to her that I can't read to her because I have to wipe.
Sorry that may have been too much information. But we all do it, don't we? Wipe, that is. At least I hope we do.
The other morning in the shower I heard,
“Roar!!!” I turned around and my two year old daughter had whipped aside the shower curtain and was pointing a toy lobster at me. “A lobster!” Then she threw it in the bath and said, “Oh, I dropped it!” I have been over the difference between purposefully dropping something and throwing it, seems we still don't know. Or are choosing not to.
When my husband is home I usually gleefully slam the bathroom door shut and 'go' in private, all by myself. It's glorious.
A few weeks ago in a Bible study one of the women had finally had all her children go to school. When we eagerly asked her what she did with this new found 'time alone' she shrugged and threw her hands up in the air and said almost hopelessly,
“I did laundry.” There was laughter and an assurance that that's okay because no one ripped it apart behind you. (The first time my daughter gleefully undid a folded pile of laundry I let her, and then congratulated myself on being so patient and understanding of her development. Now I yell at her to stop. How fast and how far we fall.)
I get this though. I know I don't have as many kids as her, or have been denied of time to focus on myself for as long, but I get this. This morning Scott took a friend to the airport, they took Emma with them to give me time to be alone. I got out of bed before they left, Scott said to me,
“Honestly I expected you to sleep longer,” and miss out on time by myself? Heck no.
“Actually I thought you would need my help to get out of here on time,” I said as I snuggled with our clothed and fed daughter and looked at him all fully clothed and stuff. He did a little self-congratulatory fist pump and was out the door in a few moments.
And then I sat there. I sipped my tea with milk and honey. I stared in front of me. My mind buzzed over what should I do with this precious time. I thought I should take advantage and try to pray. So I sat and sipped and tried to wrangle my run away thoughts onto cogent conversation with God. I finally ended up where I usually do: praying about writing, painting and sculpting. Praying for direction, understanding of why I have these desires and gifts, and a venue for which to do them in. Finally my stomach did remind me that nourishment is necessary for life, I toasted a bagel and continued to wrangle while eating. I landed on the conclusion of, 'stop whining and get up and go do it.' So I finished some gluing on a collage I'm working on and then showered. Sans any lobster's this time.
Some of the older member's of my audience may be rearing up to tell me to enjoy this time and take advantage of enjoying her while she's so young. Don't worry most of the interruptions into my privacy just crack me up, but I have learned that I need to be given time alone or I get grouchy, impatient, and easily angered. My husband has watched me spiral downward when I have been 'on' too much and has gotten good at offering me timeouts. I just need to get better at deciding what to do with myself when I get them.
Last night while trick-or-treating a couple was sitting outside in front of their garage with a fire pit blazing, the woman got up and brought a bowl of candy to Emma and our friend's son Bennett. She cooed over their cuteness and patiently waited while each two year old selected their candy. As she stood up she made a comment about this is what you get to do when they all go away to college. I had a mixture of thoughts from 'how sad' to 'how fun.' I guess that's the life lesson, enjoy it while you got it.