Olivia asked last night, “When are we going to get to spend a day with you?”
Oh, dear sweet child. I get that being in school full day has been tough on her but she usually spends every single Saturday and Sunday with me and every evening between. But she’s sensed that something is amiss.
See, I’m heading to DC tomorrow to meet with some of the most amazing moms I’ve ever had the honor of meeting. It’s a conference for the March of Dimes and this will be the fifth year I’ve been able to attend. So…she realizes I won’t be here this coming weekend and two days and two nights away feels like forever to her gentle little heart.
Tom teased O this morning about who was going to read to her while I was gone. I told her that her daddy is perfectly capable of reading to her and that I’d checked out enough books last week to cover them on Friday and Saturday night. I’ll be home early enough on Sunday to do to the reading myself.
She worries about these sorts of things. Who is going to read to her? Who is going to pick out her pajamas? Who is going to make her breakfast, lunch and dinner and provide snacks between? Girl has her priorities straight, that’s for sure.
I only go away once a year. One time a year. Which means two nights out of 365. I don’t feel guilty for this. Not even a little. But I do feel O’s heart bruising as I walk out the door. I know she misses me. Alyssa does too but at ten, she knows that two days isn’t all that long and she consoles herself with the fact that she’ll get some quality time at Gram’s (and unlimited ice cream bars) at least for a few hours on Saturday, which totally trumps missing Mom.
Olivia, on the other hand, is a mama’s girl. She can’t help it. She tells me that no one is as soft and squishy as I am. I thank her, wondering if that’s really a compliment but accepting it in the manner it was intended. Daddy is just too angular for her tastes. Too muscular and not nearly soft enough in the bosomy area. Poor fella.
I use this weekend to reconnect and recharge and yes, to sleep in a bed all by myself. I come back ready for the next year, to mother them better, to be a better wife, to give back to my community more.
I need this weekend and I know that Olivia will be just fine with her dad reading her books each night. He’s also perfectly capable of making breakfast, lunch and dinner. No matter how much he protests to the contrary.