Tuesday, February 18, 2014
A Long Wintry Weekend
I'm not really sure why last week felt extra arduous. I suspect that the whole family was experiencing some burnout and then Tess got sick. The week even ended on a Thursday. There would be no school on Friday, Valentine's Day, making President's Weekend four days instead of three. I had some loose plans for the kids. I planned for some ice skating at Evergreen Lake and maybe some snow shoeing, but then the twins came down with the cough and fever as well. Paul took Sam swimming and he cut his toe badly on something sharp in the pool. Our plans were sidelined. As much as I look forward to weekends, they're not always relaxing.
As an extreme introvert living in a noisy crazy house, there is little time for the quiet I crave all day. On Saturday, I elected to take Luke down the hill to the library so that he could spend a good chunk of the day getting his homework all up to date. It wasn't exciting or anything, but going to the library was calming and refreshing for both of us. The weekend unfolded slowly and I could feel the day moving at a less stressful pace. We both agreed that we may need to make our library date a weekly thing. In the quiet of the library, he realized he could concentrate better than at home and he was less distracted. Well, of course he was less distracted! It's quiet in the library (contented sigh).
On Sunday night, I took Luke to see The Book Thief before it leaves the theaters. I've realized that I cherish one-on-one time with each of my kids. I get to see them outside of their siblings and I discover a whole other side to each of them.
Paul and I were able to carve out two mini-dates this past weekend. After we put the Littles (Tess, Liam, and James) to bed on Saturday night, we left Luke in charge of Sam and headed to a late movie.We find small pockets of time whenever we can. On Monday, we spent a couple of hours at the local Starbucks just talking.
We talked about how hard it is to come up with an activity that's appealing to all the ages in the house. We talked about how I feel every emotion that each of my children feels. All.the.Time.We talked about managing stress. We talked about how our time with Luke is dwindling. We talked about turning points.We talked about boredom and routine. We talked about vacation this year. It sounds so trite, but it was wonderful not being interrupted for more than five minutes. Again, I could feel time moving more slowly. It actually seems weird when time isn't flying by. I'm not even sure if it feels comfortable for time to move slower, but I welcomed it.
Paul treated me to breakfast in bed all weekend. He knows that after making breakfast and packing lunches for the kids all week, the last thing I want to do is cook more eggs on Saturday. So, he took on weekend breakfasts a long time ago. He lets me sleep in, brings me breakfast in bed, and then leaves me alone for a little while longer. It's Heaven and he makes a great poached egg.
Don't get me wrong. The weekend was still loud and somewhat chaotic, but I realized that there was still some peace tucked into a lot of its moments. I did get to relax and I did get to waste some time. I wasn't really productive, but I created little events for the kids and I realized that the weekend doesn't have to be perfect.
It just has to be relaxing. For the whole family.