Today (well, technically it was yesterday if you keep a normal schedule), John’s dad came to pick Evan up for his annual summer trip. He has a ball down there in the country. John’s dad takes him flying in his plane, boating on the new-to-him 3-bedroom yacht, riding on ATVs, and more. Evan will spend the 4th of July on a lake watching a fireworks display on the water. He’ll start each and every day this week by picking where he wants to go out for breakfast. And then at the end of the week, he’ll alternate to Grandma’s house (they’re divorced) and spend some time with her.
Having never met my grandparents, I relish this opportunity for Evan. And the time he spends away always has had the same impact on me. At first we feel free. We can go to eat at restaurants where there is no kiddie menu and see movies that are not animated. And do non-kid-related things. It’s lovely. I never thought I would be the type of parent who would love this, but here you have it. Of course the remainder of the year, my kids are always home with us. I have never ever so much as though of hiring a sitter so we can go out. Not that there is anything at all wrong with doing that. Hell, it is most likely the healthier of the two for both the kids and a marriage. It just isn’t what we do. If I’m not at work, my kids are with me. But the time away is nice. Of course last year, we were adjusting to and reveling in the newness of Zach when Evan went down there. This year, we are still not kid-free because Zach is still with us, being way too small for me to even think about so much as an overnight visit, let alone weeks away. But Zach is easy-peasy. Sorry–I love you, Evan—but it’s true.
But then the same thing always happens, year after year. It gets to be nightime and Evan isn’t here. He should be here, sleeping under this roof. And I miss him so much that my heart aches. I say I need a break, and then within the first night, I can’t stand the thought that I cannot go to his room and make sure the his covers are pulled up to his chin to keep him warm in the frosty-cold a/c. I didn’t get to smell his freshly-shampooed hair in the midst of my goodnight hug. I can only hope that they made him brush and floss before bedtime because I wasn’t there.
I hate this part. It is going to be a long couple of weeks.