It’s been 2+ years since I’ve taken a nice, long, hot, bath where I could just soak and relax.
Today, I attempted such. Although, I knew my husband would be bringing me one twin at a time to bathe, as we had just come home from a waterbabies class, still time soaking in the tub with a baby can be nice. That is until my toddler burst in, stripped down, and jumped in. Relaxing bathtime finshed! And, you should see the mess I have to go clean up in the bathroom, ahhhh!
Last month, my husband gifted me with time for a hot bath. With the toddler in bed, I handed off the infant twins to my husband. As I started to soak, and eye the girl scout cookies and red wine on the side, I couldn’t ignore the twins which had both started crying, were soon screaming, and in the distance the frustration of my husband. Bathtime finished before it even began!
To begin with, let me briefly explain our current situation. Originally from Germany, our son was born and lived abroad in 2 other countries while having to move around for my husband's PhD work. Not having family around or knowing anyone, little alone going through culture shock endlessly, we kept our son close. By that, I mean, basically I was a 24/7 stay at home mom who had my son literally by our side all the time. That being said, I pictured my son crying, clinging to my leg, and breaking down when it would come time to start preschool. However, I couldn't have been more wrong!
The weekend leading up to his first day of school, our son couldn't have been more excited. When, I had to wake him up on Monday because he was sleeping in, :) I told him that it was time to wake up and get ready for kindergarten. He was immediately up and smiling, so cute:)) I was very happy that he wasn't crying or not wanting to go!
The day before going to the school, I decided to go via bike since the weather was so nice and warm. You have to take advantage of such days in Germany! My husband had installed a bike-seat on the back of my bike and I really thought, what a great idea and easy way for us to get to kindergarten. I was soooo wrong!!!! Such a bad idea!!!!!
So in the morning we got ready and went to the garage to get the bike. As I lifted my son up to put him in the seat, the bike started swaying. I had to sort of hold it with my hip, finally got him into the seat, and as I turned around, the whole bike started to flip backwards. NO.... what do I do now!!!!
I quickly realized he was too heavy for my bike. Great, the train, that we could have taken, had already gone!!!! Well, I had to make the bike work, or stay home. So I tried to sit on the bike, thinking that would help it to not flip over. That did work, sort of, it didn't feel stable and safe, but it worked, and it had to do for today.
As I started to step on the pedal, I thought, I am going to die, gosh, it felt like having a truck in the back!!! I had to push and push to get that "freaking" bike moving.
It took me nearly 40 minutes to bike a distance that usually would have taken me 15 minutes at the most! When we finally arrived, my son was so happy. I showed him his designated hook with a little trumpet symbol for his gym clothes and jacket. He was a little-bit shy to go in the class room, but when he did he immediately started to play and look around.
While he played, I stood in the corner, observing. You see, in Germany, a parent usually stays with their child for the first few days, even up to a week or month depending on how content the child is in the classroom aka do without mom and dad and sometimes aka how mom and dad can do without…. On the FIRST DAY of school, my son was doing so well, that the teacher asked me if I wanted to go home or go shopping for an hour to see how the separation would go.
I was nervous: how will he do without me, how will they take care of him, he is going to fall apart as soon as I leave…..Obviously the whole deal was harder for me than for him. In the end, I knew this independent step was best for the both of us, and I know that I have done something right, as a mom, for him to feel secure enough with me that I would come back for him.
I decided to go grocery shopping, to the store next to kindergarten, just for an hour. I went to my son, to tell him that I would run to the store and then be back to pick him up, he was not only fine, but I barely got an "okay, bye bye" from him as I grabbed a kiss and love you before he was off to play again.
Nevertheless, it was a strange feeling, I wasn't crying, as I thought I would be, but I felt a mixture of sadness with happiness for being proud of my son already showing such big boy independence. After shopping, I went back and saw my son still hard at play. He was having so much fun running around and playing that he didn't even notice mom. Finally, when he did spot my hawk eyes, he turned around and said, "oh hello mama." Really, oh hello mama, that's all I got?? This whole situation was definitely harder for me than for my son.
At the end of the day, he was nearly in tears with having to leave. I already predicted that he would cry, hadn't I? I just thought it would be for going to kindergarden, not for "having to" go home.
Oh and by the way, these days we don't go via bike, but train:)