[Note: I’ve decided to forfeit Flashback Friday for a Current Friday post this week. Why? Well, why not? So, let’s get started.]
The whole time our house was on the market Ian showed nothing but excitement over the prospect of moving to a new house. Recently, after dragging he and Elena around to Sunday open houses had become a bit of the norm, we even found a way to keep him engaged that he seemed to really like: We’d have him rate each house on a scale of 1 to 10. Oddly enough, each house either seemed to be a 1 or a 10. A man of extremes, I suppose. Anyway, the point is that he’s been really on board with this whole moving thing. Of course, that was before September 7. (Also known as the first day of kindergarten.)
Today I picked up Ian from school and when we got home, it was just he and I as Jeff and Elena were not home yet. He was sitting on the stairs having me help him untie his double-knotted shoes when I said, “Ian, you know that as of today this house is no longer our house.” He looked at me. “What??” “Well, Doug and Sara own our house now and we are paying them to let us live here for a while. It’s like we are just borrowing it from them.” This look of grave concern crossed his face. “Oh. Well, do we have a new place to live yet?” “No, not yet but we will.”
First day - ready to go!
Well, we all made it through the first day of school. Come to think of it – not only did we make it – we passed with flying colors! (Or at least that’s how I’m choosing to grade ourselves, which you have the right to do when you are just shy of the big 4-0. I just made that rule up, by the way.)
Now, I’m not going to say there weren’t a few lumps in the throat along the way. The biggest and strangest lump may have actually been yesterday when I pulled up to St. Andrews to pick up Elena and it hit me like a ton of bricks that Ian was no longer there. Gone were the days of going inside and finding him reading books or doing puzzles with friends on the floor, or finding him running around the gym or the playground outside like a crazy man, pretending he didn’t see that I had arrived and it was time to leave. Or, him asking me what was for dinner while he was getting in the car.
Elena had her last day at St. Lukes last Tuesday. I was definitely a little sad when I picked her up. Lhee, one of her two main teachers there, was so sweet. She gave her lots of hugs and kisses as we were ready to depart. Of course, Elena just wondered why the heck she was being smothered, almost as if I could hear her thinking, “Dude, what’s gotten into you?? Can’t you see my mom’s here…I’ll see you tomorrow!” She has so enjoyed it there and become attached to her teachers that I knew if she had any idea she wouldn’t be back, she’d be pretty sad, too.
Getting our shoes on before we leave for the first day at St. Andrews.
It was all good though once Wednesday morning came and I was reminded how excited Ian has been to have Elena starting at “his” school (um, for like one more week). Arms were flapping as he promised us that he was going to look out for her and help show her the ropes at St. Andrews. Of course, everyone was more than welcoming and excited to have her as the four of us came in that morning. As usual these days, Ian ran into his room barely saying goodbye – as if we were embarrassing him already. (Does this really start at age 5?)
I think there are at least a few people in this world who adapt to change better than I do. Wait, scratch that. I’m sorry to say that I have no idea what the world’s population is off the top of my head, but let’s just say that if it’s 609 zillion people – there are probably 603 zillion of them who accept change better than I do. Now, that’s not to say that I’m inflexible, but I do like to stay the course, if possible. For instance, whenever we go to Muchas Gracias for dinner, I always get a cheese enchilada and chicken taco. Why? Because it’s a sure (read: safe) bet.
Believe it or not, the same goes when it comes to matters involving parenting. Stability: good. Change: often not quite as good. When Ian came along, we lived in the Washington, D.C. area where you are more likely to see a politician acting like a mature adult than you are to get a spot for your baby at a daycare. It’s commonly known there that if you have any hope of getting your child into a “decent” daycare – meaning they at least feed them at some point during the day – you had better start going on tours and getting on wait lists before you get pregnant. Wait until conceive and you’ve already missed the boat. That’s all to say that it can be a beyond-stressful process to locate a place where you a) feel comfortable leaving your child and b) can actually get a spot to park them.
It’s been kind of a crazy week. Actually, crazy and incredibly stressful, if you must know. Not that you even asked, but hey, I told you anyway. But isn’t that kind of what blogging is all about? I digress. Now, where was I? Crazy and stressful. Right.
First of all, lots going on at work. But then again, there usually is. Second, Jeff was out of town so I was playing single mom. So, you know what I did the first night I picked them up? Yep, I hit the McDonald’s drive thru. Probably not going to win the Nutritional Mom of the Year award for that one but I was tired, stressed (did I mention that already?) and essentially in survival mode. And, I’m pretty sure that the Golden Arches were created for parents having days like that. Let the record show that I did not get anything for Elena, though. I did manage to dig up something semi-nutritious for her. I think I have created some unofficial rule that my children can’t have fast food until they turn three or something – and then all bets are off. Don’t ask my logic in this, because I have no idea but it seems like the right thing to do so I just go with it.