Susan's Blog

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Alone, But Not Quite

Funny thing about going it alone; you kind of learn more about your own strength, and about others. Ned adds so much to our life; he is woven intricately well into our rich and complicated family fabric. When he leaves, like he did yesterday, there is a big tear, and it seems as if all the fraying will start a gigantic unraveling. But then we get our bearings, and we figure out a way to come back together, to reattach ourselves to each other in his absence.

So yesterday, I spent a lot more time with Max than I ever do. We shared companionable silences in my car, and had satisfying conversations on I.M. He kept laughing upstairs, so I would I.M. him and ask him to send me what was funny. Then I would laugh. We did this a couple of times. Then later, I and the three boys watched “Man Vs. Wild” on the Discovery channel, something I would never watch, but it was absorbing for all of us. The guy, whose first name is aptly “Bear,” I think, was a young, fit, thirtiesh Brit who loved putting himself into dangerous situations, like bear trails, shark-infested waters, and the inside of crevasses. All the sorts of mishegos that gives me nightmares, but which were riveting to watch him survive. Max was really into it. Ben made it funnier by reminding us that the camera guy was with him the whole time, what about him? Nat loved to watch all the extreme sport aspects of the show. And I loved hearing Bear say, “Glahssier,” instead of “Glay-sher” and watching him take off his shirt now and then.

We all went to bed fairly early; I had gotten up with Ned at 4 a.m. after all, had danced after “supper” (too much bad ice cream), and had had no nap. But Ben was anxious, I think, from Ned being gone, (Sweet Little B!) and he showed up in my room at 10:30 saying, “I find I am thinking about death” in his little helium voice. Oh, man! So we had a discussion about how everyone dies at some point, and you just can’t think about it too much. (Yeah, good luck with that! As Seinfeld would say) I knew what was coming. He wanted to sleep with me, especially with Ned gone. Now, I am not a Family Bed kind of person. I saw this Great Guide On Short Infant Cribs for my small mother, and all of my children have always had their own cribs, their own beds, their own bedtimes, and my bedroom is just my bedroom (and Ned’s). I’m not cold; I just like my space. Ned and I need adult time, simple as that. And yet, I am not a rigid person. Sometimes a kid just needs more, you know? And how could I refuse when my Beast suddenly gets all squooshy on me?

So Ben slept with me. Incredibly sweet. At one point I was awakened by a little snoring face right in my face. I breathed him in, his little nightime breath, then pushed him over, just like his father!

And today, my challenge was to take Nat to basketball on my own. I have never done that before. Ned does the public interface more often, if you remember, and the sports. So I was really nervous, and half-decided to bag it. But then what would Nat have this weekend? Nothing! So how could I? Suck it up, Sue, and get going, I thought. All coffeed up, I was ready.

Stopped for the candy-after treat: butterfinger for Nat, 3 Musketeers for Ben. Don’t look, don’t smell, for me. All was well. Got to Boston College, and promptly forgot how to go. I had a tiny feeling of the directions, but not enough. “Uh…is it here, Nat? Can you help me get to the parking lot? Is it here, or next?”
“Next,” he said.
“Next? Really? Next? Or here?”
Son of a gun, he was right. “Okay, so now, here?”
“Yes, here.” I turned the car. It looked right. Sure enough, there was the parking lot! Why do I have so little faith?
Then Nat pointed to the exact spot he and Ned always take. I pulled in, and felt like I’d just won the lottery.


The Natvigator!

— added by Someone Said on Saturday, February 24, 2007 at 12:44 pm

Hmm, funny that. I convinced that my other half has the parking spot fairy on his shoulder!

— added by Maddy on Saturday, February 24, 2007 at 2:12 pm

I’ve been living on my own for a year now. It’s amazing the things I’ve learned in that year. Things about myself, my life, my abilities and exactly what I am capable of doing.
Living alone is a scary thing, but a very liberating one. I hope you find some time to enjoy it. 😀

— added by Jen on Sunday, February 25, 2007 at 1:18 am

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