Saturday nite and I'm snuggled up with a new fleece blanket watching House Hunters International.... the height of sophistication people! It might be better if I had like a thick green avocado mud mask on or a Biore Pore Strip on my nose or something (I don't - pinkie swear). I've got kids in bed and no cats sitting by my side. Yes, folks, I am Home Alone.
It isn't the first time that I've been home alone with the kids. When we moved to Madtown 3 years ago, Hubs went ahead on the corporate relocation, and XJ and Eddy toughed it out in Minneapolis for 12 weeks (me, in my first trimester with Miss P, XJ only 12 months). It wasn't fun, but XJ and I bonded over routine readings of Snowmen at Night and Good Night Moon.
XJ can recite both book by heart. It was a good (albeit forced) bonding for the two of us. I cherish my memories of that time even though it was stressful and solitary. Back then, I was an invincible new parent. High on hormones and ignorance, I felt vulnerable yet ultimately competent. I can do this. No biggie.
Now we've got Miss P and Eddy knows better. I am not high on hormones or ignorance. I'm competent but I'm still vulnerable. I think just knowing this makes me a real parent now! This time around, I'm focusing on not channeling my stress into my reactions or interactions with the girls. I'm trying to be more affectionate that I am naturally. I'm switching up some routines, allowing for some later nights, an extra book, a treat or a cuddle. I'm going to try to bond, like XJ and I did 3 years ago, so that I can look back on this time and feel that it was a positive and not a negative.
The house is quiet now.
On Thursday nite I found a lovely family to adopt the cats. It's great that they saw through all my tears to give the kitties a new home. Honestly, I wasn't sure I had it in me. I've had those cats longer than I've had my husband. Particularly Belle. I knew Shadow would be fine. She's pretty laid back and will warm up to anyone who will pet her butt.
But not my Belle Belle. Belle is more sensitive. Longer to take to strangers. Skittish around the kids. More likely to throw up or hide. She's my first baby. She's moved to 8 different houses with me from Baltimore to Manchester to Canterbury to Bloomington to Savage to Madison. Belle's loyalty and love is earned and not freely given. I was the most worried about her adjustment to a new family given her attitude and her age. I think that the adopting Mom saw that she was a lover and I'm hopeful that they will bond like we had.
The house is quiet. I've lost three voices of my family. Hubs, Shadow and Belle. I cried a lot the last couple days, but I've turned a corner. I've put my feet up and my mud mask on. I've cuddled up with a reading of Snowman at Night with a new fleece blanket not infected by cat hair. I'm ready to tackle whatever this move can throw at me now.