But life doesn't always follow the path of our Grand Vision, does it?
While there are drawbacks to this, I think there are positives as well. We get a lot of one-on-one time. I can focus on just what his needs are. I have an abundance of time and energy to spend on this wonderfully spirited young man to teach him, to guide him. It's easy to just pick up and go wherever and whenever we feel like. We have the space and time to talk and talk and talk.
Even though he's an only, when he's not here - like the month he just spent with his Dad in Virginia this summer - things are different. I imagine most parents who share custody can relate to this feeling.
It's not an emptiness exactly because there's lots to fill a day with, especially since we own our own business. It's more of an ache, the knowledge of blank space in my life.
I miss his frequent calls of "Mommy!" or "I have three things to tell you, one is...." or "Come here, I want to show you something!" I miss his voice in the morning, getting him dinner, riding bikes, worrying about his amount of screen time, reading together, and just the sound and feel of him nearby. The house is quieter, tidier, smaller.
When he is here my days and my heart are full, busy, complex, focused, structured, driven. It's not the same when he's away. Eventually I throw myself into the free time I have - to spend with hubby, to garden, to read, to blog, to see my mom and friends. I do appreciate that down time to reboot and relax, and most of all I love the extra couple time.
And I am endlessly grateful he has a strong relationship with his Dad and gets to do and see new things (Washington D.C., how exciting!)
I guess that's how it will be one day when he goes off on his own to college or some other place or gets married. I think I'll be okay when that day comes, but I know that time is not here yet and so his absence is more pronounced.
For now, he's back. For now, he's 7 and we have a ways to go before the world beckons and I face a truly empty nest. For now, I always have an ear and eye cocked in his direction to see what he needs or what he's up to. For now, I will hold him close and take joy in all today brings.
|There's food ready to go in his lunch bag!
|We didn't have bananas in the house for 3 weeks.
|His bed is rumpled.
|There's small-sized laundry in the bin.
|Time for limits again! Thank you, God, for him.