Tuesday, November 08, 2005

The Post-Holiday Slump

As I anticipated, I am suffering from the post-holiday slump. And two daycare kids have goopy noses and now my daughter is coming down with a cold, too. The 3-year old boy has an illness every other week during the fall and winter. I can't begin to express my dismay and annoyance when I see his nose begin to run and I realize that a new virus will make its way like a forwarded email joke through my family. My own daughter didn't have a cold for her entire first year of life, but the first day I watched the little boy, he arrived with a disgusting snotty nose and my daughter got sick.

On Thursday morning, my husband leaves town for a three day business trip. He'll arrive home in time for church Sunday. The following Friday, he leaves for a whole week. He'll be gone for the second Thanksgiving in a row--celebrating with his family in Texas because Thanksgiving will also be the day of his dad's 75th birthday party.

And so I'm trying to work up some enthusiasm for childcare and schooling at home and vacuuming, without much success, I might add. This is a short week of school--they have half a day on Thursday and no school on Friday because of Veteran's Day--so I just need to hang on.

My husband called at one point this morning and heard my daughter wailing in the background. He inquired and I explained that I was sick of her dumping out all the toy bins, so I began picking up everything and putting it into a trash bag. At that point, she went berserk and so I sternly warned her that if she dumped them out again, I would put them in the bag. I ordered her gently suggested that she might want to pick them up--and that's when the phone rang. She was picking up toys, but she was crying--loudly.

He reminded me that she isn't feeling well and that she's had a rough week. I hate it when he's right.

Last week, after her nap we sat in the Big Green Chair (as she calls it), rocking. The weather outside was blustery and I had a moment of clarity and really saw the fleeting nature of that scene. She's my last little one, the last baby who will curl herself into my lap and insist that we rock.

She's my final chapter, the last song, the lingering scent of perfume in the air. When she "reads" every word of Goodnight Moon in her sing-song voice, I wish my eyes were a video camera so I could capture the sweetness forever.

And then I tell her it's time for bed, even though I know she'll wake up and graduate from high school and enroll in a highly-regarded college and meet Mr. Right and move across the country. "One more time!" she pleads and I relent because I can't stop time, but I can try to memorize the curls on the back of her head while she reads. One more time.

12 Comments:

Anonymous Autumn said...

Good Night Moon is the best book. We have two, one framed and one we read.

The "goodnight nobody" part is a tad chilling, though.

Beautifully written, btw. This blog entry, not Good Night Moon.

11:05 PM  
Anonymous feithy said...

Aw...goopy noses aside, aren't kids wonderful?

5:38 AM  
Blogger sallyrogers said...

I feel what you are saying. I look at the hairs on the back of my son's hair and I hold his hand as often as possible -- just to feel the size and remember that soft little boy skin. Time goes too quickly!

5:47 AM  
Blogger Julana said...

Now I see why your husband gave you a few days off. The calm before the storm.
You are rich in your children. I just saw the article in a blog about the family about there who just lost five children in a truck accident.

6:22 AM  
Blogger Goslyn said...

Stop making me cry. It's not nice, especially when I'm at work.

Beautiful post.

6:51 AM  
Blogger Reloaded said...

beautifully written

...there was a telephone, and a picture of... the cow jumping over the moon.

7:49 AM  
Blogger ellipsis... said...

Hey Mel--

Thanks.

This reminded me of my own sweet girl, my favorite co-pilot.

When she was a baby I always sang to her in the car and her favorite was "You Are My Sunshine."

One day we were tooling along and I sang the song but as I got to the end of it, I was distracted by a car that suddenly pulled out in front of me, leaving the song dangling at "...please don't take my sunshine..."

And from the backseat came the sweet little peal: "AWAY!!!!"

It was her first word. In song. A moment I will never forget.

ell :)

7:59 AM  
Blogger Vashti said...

I, too, have been slightly down since my girl's weekend. Back on the treadmill. I'm a total germaphobe so I know what you mean about being exposed to sick kids.

My 2 year old is my last one and there is at least one moment each day that I want to burn into my memory. She is a handful but can be so unbelievable sweet at times. I have moments of grief over the fact that I won't have another.

8:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wonderously said-my son also loves good-night moon-he is my last song(I don't count the new ouppy in that category). I really needed to read this today- thank you
Deborah

9:27 AM  
Blogger Smoov said...

I am all choked up.....

5:21 PM  
Blogger Krisco said...

That last paragraph is wonderful.

10:57 PM  
Blogger Krisco said...

Mel,
I hope it is okay, I quoted you (with credit and a link and everything) to say that I thought that last paragraph was so wonderful. It just really hit me.

I was going to do a trackback for you but I didn't see one on here. If I just missed it, let me know. Thanks!
Or email me if you'd like: cribceiling@yahoo.com

7:52 AM  

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