This is about another one of those rough patches in life. In marriage. In the bleak banality of day-to-day survival.
We returned the rental car on Monday, which makes us a one-vehicle family for a bit. Which is fine. No car payment=good. But it doesn’t do much for the one stuck without a car. Namely, me. Especially when it rains. I like to go places. Even if it’s just running errands. It gets both me and the little one out of the house, breaks up the day. Allows for a bit of adult interaction, even if only between me and the checker at Safeway.
James has been working long. Getting home little before bedtime. And last night, when I got home after my shift, and after M was finally asleep, we had a great dinner. At the table, even. His new found enthusiasm for food experimentation is something about which I will never complain. But after? He was so torn over what to watch, and we decided it would be best to watch the UFO show for whatever reason, while I just puttered around on-line, as I usually do when there’s nothing on but reruns or shows that aren’t really up my alley. So he turned on his show and promptly fell asleep on the couch.
He’s been up so early, working so hard all day, even going in for a couple hours on his day off, that I don’t blame him for being tired. For falling asleep around the same time as our son every night. But when we’re only home together for less than an hour awake, it leaves a little bit of something to be desired on my end.
I occupy myself on-line. I read blogs, browse Etsy shops and often find myself following various links on a subject in which I hadn’t gone on-line intending to get so involved. Suddenly, I look up, and the husband’s been snoring for hours and it’s rapidly creeping up on midnight.
The only thing I can do about this lonely feeling is to do something else. Because as much as I need some interaction from my spouse, I can’t always depend on him to read my mind (even though it has happened in the past). If we were interacting with each other rather than passively staring at our various magic story screens, he might not doze off so easily and I might not be left suddenly wondering where my night went.
As for my car-less days, I’ve been in homemaking mode. On Tuesday, I baked. I hauled out the 3-year-old KitchenAid that hadn’t seen much use at all over its three years in our household, and I mixed up a batch of oatmeal and oatmeal raisin cookies. And it was so easy that I might just have to do some of my own food experimentation. I’ll leave the dinners to James, but perhaps we won’t have to buy cookies every time we go to Costco. And I’m having visions of homemade loaves of bread coming into our cabinets soon, too. Sometimes, inspiration hits in an unexpected way. And if these things can be easy, like maybe keeping the KitchenAid handy will make it, it could be a very good thing, indeed.
I’ve also been organizing. A little bit here and there. The other day, I just went through one box. But today, I pulled everything out of the kitchen closet/pantry/laundry area, and put most of it back in there in an orderly fashion. there is so much more space than I thought there was. And I threw things away, set up a pile of things for the rummage sale, and only found two boxes and a tub that needs further inspection. In the two boxes and tub, there will probably be more trash and more rummage sale items, too. Hopefully only a small amount will need to be kept and stored. This is my mission, and even though the urge doesn’t wash over me daily, it’s coming more often now than it ever has in my pack-rat past, so I’ll take it, and someday down the road, life won’t be so cluttered anymore.
I do have to say, though, that M also gets lonely. Especially when his mommy’s in cleaning mode. I always give him my attention when he needs it, but sometimes not as immediately as we would both like. I am looking forward to our play group tomorrow. Even though it does take me away from an afternoon (awake!) with James, we will get out of the house and see friends.
I have a diaper party on Saturday, which will also be a fun couple hours. But James may be gone all day again, which makes the rest of the day’s hours just the same as they’ve been over the last couple weeks. So there’s that.
I’m not sure how to manage this. I’ve been trying one day at a time. I’m trying to do little things that will help with big picture future things. But it’s not enough. There are play dates and phone dates and check-ups and work shifts that break the week’s monotony somewhat, but where is my best friend in all this? my partner? my spouse? I miss him. And I feel like I don’t know what’s going on most of the time, or how temporary it is. I don’t have any idea when I can expect this stretch of single-feeling that I’m going through to end.
At least there’s a laughing toddler involved. The days go faster when M is having fun. And I feel better when he’s smiling up at me and telling me what’s on his mind, even if he’s not speaking much English.