Today I am fortunate to have Robin from Farewell Stranger guest posting.
Robin was one of the first bloggers I connected with when I began writing and she has inspired me, encouraged me to find my voice, and is one of the first people I go to when I need a PPD friend.
Her blog focuses on her journey through PPD, motherhood, and PPD awareness. She is a brilliant writer, huge supporter of all writers, and is a wonderful friend.
Please take the time to check her blog out!
Saturday afternoon I was standing in my driveway in the blazing sunshine feeling a little jumpy.
Our driveway is pebbled, not smooth, and the rocks were digging into my feet. I took a step to the left to stand on the grass, which was softer, cooler and more feet-friendly. But my feeling jumpy was less to do with my feet and more to do with the toddler pushing his fire truck around on the lawn.
This fire truck is new, and he LOVES it. Seeing him light up when he plays with it lights me up too. He turns the siren on and insists that you call the fire chief (him, and he has the hat to prove it) to come and fight the “fire” we made out of construction paper. It brings out his joy and his imagination and his boyishness. I love that he loves it.
In that moment, though, I wanted him to love it somewhere else.
My mom had offered to take him for a sleepover and was at our house to pick him up. He had showed her the fire truck. He had demonstrated the siren. He had worked the ladders. We were all well acquainted with the fire truck, but the suggestion that he get in the car to go to Grandma’s was falling on selectively-deaf ears as the fire truck drove in circles on our lawn, tackling clover and other natural disasters.
It’s not that I don’t love him, but after an up-and-down, incessant-banging, non-sleeping sort of week I kind of wanted him to hit the road.
He loves sleeping at Grandma and Grandpa’s, and they love having him (a night at a time, anyway). We’re blessed to have my parents who can and will take him for a night to give us a break. The irony, of course, is if the situation were reversed he’d be saying, “Stop talking!” and “I want to go RIGHT NOW!”
That, however, is not something I can yell at my toddler – not without a black mark on my nomination for mom of the year, at least. But my staccato, “Connor! Come on! Get in the car!” pretty much conveyed the same message.
Yep, my inner three-year-old came out in that moment and I realized just how much I was looking forward to a quiet house.
The suggestion of a stop at the store to buy ice cream caught his attention long enough to get him moving toward the car, but there then required a discussion about whether or not he could bring the truck into the store. At that point I would gladly have tied the truck to him and buckled him, ladders and all, into his car seat, but instead stepped aside while my husband got him settled.
Then I stood looking at him as he sat in the car, windows open, about to drive away from both his parents. He’s been away before, to my parents’ and to friends’ for sleepovers, but in that moment he just looked like a little boy with a fire truck and my mama heart melted.
“I love you!” I told him, and we exchanged a kiss through the open window. And then they were off.
As I went back into the house, the sweetness of that toddler kiss lingered for a moment. And then all that was left was the sweetness of silence.
Thank you so much for guest posting Robin!