Last night my dad called me just to check up on me, see how things were going. He does that sometimes. He used to do that when I was in New Zealand, too. He would often call from some random airport while he waited to board a plane or from a car when he was driving on some business trip. I like that my dad calls me. But that’s not the point of this post.
He asked how things were going and I said, well, the kids are asleep. They’re all alive. So I guess we had a pretty good day. He laughed. But honestly, sometimes that’s all we can hope for.
It’s been a rough week or so, with illness and cabin fever. It’s winter here and it’s getting pretty chilly, although nothing like what they’re experiencing in the midwest with heavy ice storms and such. But because of the cold and the kids being sick with various things I didn’t want to take them out to play, so we’ve been stuck in the house for most of the week, missing church activities and play dates and pretty much getting sick of our own company.
It’s during these times that I must really seek to get perspective. It’s so easy to focus on the negative things that the kids are doing, forgetting that they’re bored, too. They’re tired of being inside. They know they’re missing the fun things they normally do and it’s all because they’re sick which is something they have very little control over (I personally think it’s because we’re just not used to these American germs. No joke.)
So, late this afternoon I left the younger two with my mom and I took Precious, my 4 year old, out to do some things and go to AWANA at church. We ran by the house and the post office then we headed to Walmart. I don’t normally like going to Walmart in the evenings, particularly in December, but I had a good attitude about it. We dined at McDs inside, which Precious thought was totally cool. And then we did a bit of Christmas shopping for Grandma and Grandpa. And I discovered self-checkout, which is awesome.
But the entire time we were out, I was really focussing on Precious. I wanted to listen to what she was saying, answer her questions as intelligently as I could. You know what my favourite part was? Holding her hand. We held hands the whole time, except when we were eating. I don’t get to hold her hand very much because I’m usually holding the baby in one arm and the 2 year old’s hand in the other. The 4 year old I can trust to walk by herself if necessary. But tonight we held hands.
I watched her at AWANA as she got two more badges for her Cubbies vest. She’s growing up. But she’s still such a little girl. I’m so glad for nights like tonight when I can just be with her and focus on her instead of listening with half an ear while making dinner and watching to make sure the baby doesn’t stuff something horrible in his mouth and choke.
I sure hope I can remember nights like tonight when I feel like the kids will never learn how to tie their shoes or I think they’re going to grow up into big kids that will terrorise the neighbourhood or they’ll get scurvy from not getting enough Vitamin C.