Feb. 2nd, 2012

serenissima: woman's face with glasses (real life)
So. Today was Groundhog Day, and we've been here at my parents' house for something like six weeks.

Physically settling into the house was simple. Finding a rhythm to bring order to my days has been harder. Back at the moonbase, I had developed a routine based around the three-days-a-week playgroup schedule, sending Smash Boy to day care for half days about four days a week. I decided to move in with my parents, believing that my mother could provide at least as much childcare as I was getting from the day care facility at the moonbase, but it's not clear whether that's true. Rather than mind the kiddo for hours at a stretch, mostly my mother fills in for brief periods so I can, for instance, eat meals uninterrupted or take a shower. My parents' house is not childproofed as well as where we were living last, so the boy can get into more trouble. My father has very limited patience for his antics. My mother is more indulgent but still gets worn out keeping after him, and she's been having spells of not feeling well: she seems to nap almost as much as her grandson, and her diabetes is getting harder to control for some reason. (She says my brother and I were easier to manage at the same age, but perhaps 30 years puts a rosy glow on the memories.)

It has been hard for me to accept that my parents are old. I was disturbed when, years ago, they both started using pillboxes to keep track of their daily medications and vitamins. I'm coming to realize that living here is less about the free childcare and more about us all enjoying each other's company, since normally we don't see much of each other. I'm revising my expectations for this period of our lives. In truth, even going to the "Mommy and me" playgroup and perhaps meeting friends for lunch now and then, I would have been lonely out there, especially in the evenings with just my child and myself and the dog.

My week so far:

Monday I didn't do much; I was frustrated and sulky.

Tuesday I took Smash Boy to a little municipal airport that had a playground. The playground was small, but it offered a nice view of commuter planes taking off and landing. It was a worthwhile venture.

Wednesday's accomplishments were scheduling a veterinarian appointment for Mungo and raking some leaves in the back yard, so it will be easier to look out for the things Mungo drops.

Today is Thursday. It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day. Smash Boy woke up very late, around noon, but after he ate, we went to a park about 20 minutes' drive away — it'd be more like 10 minutes without traffic. The park is newly built last year; the playground is modestly sized but has some very nice play structures. There were lots of young children there, and Smash Boy had fun. He took his nap at 5 PM. I hope his schedule isn't screwed up too badly.

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