Tomorrow is new student orientation at University of Humble Pie. I spent the day in preparation by deep cleaning the basement, rearranging my kids' rooms, and planning chore charts entitled "Your mom goes to college." Before I head to campus I'll retrieve my things from the townhouse where I've been holed up for the past month and come home to stay.
My husband, who is quite ill with a nasty chest cold/crypt-keeper hack, asked me at 10 p.m. if I was tired. I've virtually ignored him all day, which is not like me. I said yes, but only because I should be. I could keep cleaning. All through the night.
I'm going to take a little extra Lithium for a few days. Just a half tablet more until January doesn't feel so... January.
I hate to say it, but this elevation in energy is typical. If I don't want to crash mid-February I've got to pace myself.
As we scrubbed the bathroom together, B— my seven-year-old son asked me if it felt like we were just visiting. I told him yes, and that it would for a while, but that we'd readjust. Then he asked me if other parents have these kinds of problems. By that I think he means separations, or fighting, or abuse. Again, I told him yes. It happens a lot more than he might think, and that in some cases parents don't work as hard as his mom and dad have to fix their problems and treat each other the way they deserve to be treated so that they can be together; instead they get divorced. In some cases, they just fight and fight until they forget that they love each other, but nobody leaves. I told him he was lucky.
"That only happens with moms and dads, right?" he asked.
"What do you mean?"
"That they forget that they love each other. Parents and kids don't ever do that. It's just moms and dads, right?"
"No, it can happen to anyone. Even parents and kids. For a long time Grandma and I didn't even talk to each other. We didn't like to be around each other, but we've worked hard to remember that we love each other and to fix our problems too."
He's still processing that idea—repentance and forgiveness—I can tell. But we are happy to be home.
Even if it still feels like we're visiting.