Last night my parents watched our children for the first time for a sleepover night. It involved a makeshift bed on the floor with lots of quilts and falling to sleep while watching a kids’ movie. In the morning my mom made them a far better breakfast than I typically do and got them to school on time easily.
So at 9:19 AM – I wake up. The house is calm, there is no breakfast rush or kids teeth to brush or lunch to fix. I do chores, take a hot shower, listen to music loud and make our bed, begin sewing in my new sewing room. I check and re-check my schedule (Sophie gets out early from school today). Having a house to myself and having no risk the home would get messy anytime I turned around was a revelation. What a nice morning.
Then at 12:15, fully 45 minutes past when I was supposed to pick Nels up from preschool, my girlfriend calls on location to ask if I wanted her to bring my son home.
For about thirty minutes the shock I felt at forgetting my son’s pickup time clouded my knowledge of what the chain of events mean – sleepover, then forgetting a child. It’s simple: as a parent of young children, if I slow down my breakneck pace I run the risk of losing my system entirely. A more minor example of this was a girlfriend (the same one who brought Nels home today – thank you) who experienced a nice tea and cookie date at my house and was so enjoying herself she forgot her young baby was in the living room, unsupervised. It was like it took her a few moments of being able to straighten her body and not have someone grabbing at her hair before her mind went, “What’s different right now… Oh right, the baby! Yikes!”
At least I did not forget Sophie’s early release day.
My date night with Ralph was very nice. We both worked on our projects, did a little bit of housework, and watched a movie I’d been meaning to see (it was excellent; my husband didn’t seem too impressed although I would have thought he’d love it), and then had some awesome beard nookie (the beard makes everything awesome). I didn’t even miss the kids although today I was grinning ear-to-ear to see them again.