SAHMs, My Hat’s Off to You!

Posted on November 28, 2009. Filed under: Parenting | Tags: , , , |

As I sit here desperately craving some adult company, I decided I ought to publicly acknowledge my even greater appreciation for SAHMs, which has grown over the past two days of one-on-one time with Braden.  Don’t get me wrong — I have enjoyed the time I’ve spent with son, and always wish there was more of it.  (I’m saying this with utmost sincerity; not just because I’m “supposed to.”)  It’s just that my days with Braden are usually peppered with visits from my sister, time with Doug, and play dates.  Tonight, I am exhausted.  Not sleepy exhausted, but Transformers-Ben-Ten-Hot-Wheels-monsters-wrestling-“Mom, watch this” exhausted.  And I don’t know how the SAHMs do it all week, every week.  Seriously, my hat’s off to you.

Right now, “we” are watching “The Santa Clause.”  It’s eerie that I’m writing about this while a story of a divorced parent’s relationship with his son is unfolding on the screen.

I have one more day to go, alone with my boy.  So far, we’ve played games, put together puzzles, prepared meals, made big toy messes, cleaned them up, gone for a bike walk, run some errands, gone to see a movie [side note: don’t see Planet 51 unless on well-earned special request of a child], had pizza night and read books.  Tomorrow, we will do birthday thank you cards (I’m behind), draw pictures, and put out Christmas decorations.  Brady has been such a good boy.  And even still, I would just like a grown up to visit with or a kid for him to play with.

Just a minute ago – I kid you not – Braden said, “Mom, why do you have me for such a long time?”  Perhaps he is exhausted, too.

 

Other related posts on MLI:

Battle of the Baby Mamas

The Parental Paradigm – My Place as Single Mom

The Moment

From the Other Side – #3. Not Choosing a Primary Residence in Joint Custody Arrangment

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The Perfect Date

Posted on September 28, 2009. Filed under: Stories | Tags: , , , , |

Now, I’m not really one for going to the movies. I can list a million reasons why I’d rather stay home, but most importantly, I see no need to spend $10.50 to miss the best part because I drank a large Diet Coke to wash down the popcorn (make that $20.50) that I finished before the previews were over and I just CANNOT hold it anymore. If I said I go to the movies once a year, that would be an over statement.

But then I saw the preview for Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. A favorite read of mine when I was a kid, now on the big screen? And I have a three-(almost four-)year-old who has never been to the movies? It must be a sign! It is time to take my little man out on the town.

I told Braden Saturday morning that we were going to the movies after his nap. The whole day he asked about going to the movies. He was excited, and he didn’t even know for what. (By the way, for my mommy friends who struggle with naptime, I discovered nap bribing on this lovely day.) So he went right to sleep at naptime, and when he woke, we both got dressed and got in the car to go on our date. It may have been a little new age for me that he let me drive, (and I would have preferred some flowers to the buger that he tried to give me) but I can put my convictions aside for one night.

We got  downtown a little too early to go into the theater, so I figured I’d stop at Blockbuster and return the overdue DVDs I had sitting in my passenger seat, just to kill some time. Brady and I got out of the car and I dropped the movies in the outdoor drop box slot. As I started to turn away from the building, Braden pulled me back. “Mom – we got to go at the movies. C’mon. Let’s go inside!” he said, tugging at my arm. I had no idea just how little he knew about the concept of going to the movies. He actually thought we were going to watch a movie at Blockbuster (a.k.a. “The Movie Store”)! I set him straight and then we drove over to the theater.

While waiting in line at the concession stand before heading in, Braden pointed to a screen playing trailers up on the wall and said, “Is this the movie that we are watchin’?” I was just loving the suspense that was building up due to his complete lack of knowledge on the matter. We ordered a bag of popcorn and two sodas. SODA!! Braden got to have a whole Sprite all to himself. This would be reason enough to come to the movies. He could gulp that thing down and leave and he’d be satisfied to the extent of bragging about it at school on Monday. But the best was still yet to come.

We walked down the long hallway to the big black door with a big number three painted in white. “This is our movie, mom.” And we went in. And that precious little three-year-old mouth opened in amazement and I nearly had to scrape his jaw off the dark corridor floor lit with track lighting. (This is still before he’s seen the screen.) We pick a seat and he waits. And waits. And waits. The longest nine minutes of his mini life. “Mom, it’s not gonna come.” “Mom, where is the movie?” “Mom, it’s not coming. I toldya.” And then it came. Throughout the previews he asked, “is this the movie we’re watching?” But when the actual movie came on – he watched it. No, he absorbed it. He was in awe of the whole experience. He was laughing, making sure I was laughing, sharing popcorn, whispering when he wanted to say something – until one time when he accidentally blurted something out loud at a suddenly quiet part. He was a little embarrassed, but I(of course) thought it was adorable!

Brady’s first trip to the movies was fantastic. I was very proud of what a good boy he was. He sat still through the entire movie and he did not get loud or fussy. He didn’t even kick the seat in front of him! It was the perfect date. And the whole event made me appreciate going to the movies from a new perspective. That of a mommy who has something fun to do with her child that we can both enjoy together and create memories of movies shared.

When we left he kept saying how awesome it was. He wanted to tell everyone he knew. We had to make some very important phone calls – Mimi, Doug, Dad. And on Sunday morning he woke up and said, “after my nap we are going at the movies, right?”

 I wish.

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