If I ignore the hour on the clock, this moment is just like in my fantasy. My stay-at-home-mom fantasy.
It’s the first day of my vacation. Philip and I are sitting together at the dining room table. It’s just us and the dog at home. I have cereal ready for his breakfast, but he surprises me by reaching for the waffle on my plate. So we share waffles for breakfast. In my fantasy, we eat breakfast together every morning.
It’s Friday, and Philip doesn’t go to preschool on Fridays. But, in my fantasy, on other weekdays, I would be loading Philip into the car for school. Maybe this would be the day I stay to volunteer. Or maybe it is one of the other days when I run errands, workout and get stuff done around the house.
It’s Friday, but we are between story time sessions at the library. In my fantasy life, Grandma still takes Philip to libraries for this program. You know, so she can have her special time with him. I’m not jealous when I’m a stay-at-home-mom. I get to see Philip all of the time.
But it’s a Friday without story time, so after breakfast I sit beside Philip at the dining room table as he draws and writes his letters. The dishes can wait.
That was my fantasy for my vacation. Some of that stuff actually happened. I did share waffles with Philip that Friday before Christmas. However, it was after 11:00 am by the time we ate “breakfast.” Philip and I had both slept in late, but only because we had been up half the night together. I wasn’t even supposed to be home that day, but Philip had been up coughing. He caught a cold just as school ended for his winter break a few days early. And while he hasn’t learned the importance of sharing toys, he has always been more than willing to share germs. So, when Philip had finally gone back to sleep that Friday morning just at the time I was supposed to get ready for work, I was feeling like crap complete with runny nose and scratchy throat. I called in sick to work and went back to bed.
That’s why I didn’t get to live out my stay-at-home-mom fantasy during my prematurely started vacation. Philip and I both had head colds, so we didn’t do many of the things I had envisioned.
Nevertheless, we were able to spend time with family at Christmas, get lots of cuddle and nap time in and even recover enough for our day trip to Niagara Falls.
I also got to live a small part of my fantasy as 2012 came to an end. Our local library hosted a “Noon Year’s Eve Party” for children. It was all of the celebration of midnight enjoyed at midday. Oh, and no booze. This was for kids, you know.
Since I was on vacation, I got to take Philip. There were crafts, games, snacks and music. As Philip made a party hat and noisemaker, I realized that he knew how to use the craft materials appropriately. Sure, he still had that sensory-seeking impulse to grab a handful of beads and fling them in the air. Yet, he knew that markers were for coloring, stickers for sticking and the hole-punch for making holes. The latter was too big for his hands, but I give him credit for trying.
As we counted down to noon, I got to thinking about last New Year’s Eve. I remembered worrying that Philip would still be awake at midnight. I remembered how there was no sleeping in since we still had to keep Philip on a strict routine to avoid meltdowns and chaos.
Last year, I’m not sure I would have taken Philip to the library. I feared how he would react in a new environment. I stressed over whether he would be able to participate. I worried about how things would work out.
I didn’t hesitate to take him yesterday. In just a year, both Philip and I are better prepared for these outings. In my fantasies, everything is perfect.
But in reality? Well, reality isn’t so bad after all.
Happy New Year!