I’ve read about Phantom Limb Syndrome, in which amputees can still feel the presence of a missing limb, and similarly, here chez nous, I still find myself looking around the corner slowly to see what disaster awaits me. At about 6pm I start to tense up, anticipating several long, exhausting hours of dinner, bath and bed, or what a friend of mine likes to call whack-a-mole. But it never arrives. I get two to bed relatively easily, and the evening is mine. All mine. My first thought in the mornings is how much time I have before all five are awake and the clock starts ticking on my day. But the boys’ room is silent, and Francie, who is usually up first, and races to our room as though something is chasing her (which may be the case), doesn’t come in.
Don’t get me wrong. I still have the occasional night of teething misery (last night) only to be awaken by Fiona climbing into my bed and declaring, “Guess who just wiped her wet tushy all over your pillow?” Awesome. But the pace has slowed significantly, and so have I. Most notable is how much time M and I have spent together in just five days. I can’t believe I forgot how funny he is.
Of course, I worry about the other three. As ambassadors of our clan, I wonder, “Are they showing us up?” “What sort of unspeakable crap is Bennett declaring the ‘we do at home‘?” “Are they talking like truckers? Farting in public?” What stunts have they pulled? (Only last week Bennett won a raffle by skirting the one-ticket-per-person rule; he showed up in disguise five different times.) I keep checking the local news in Denver, because my mother in law is famously discreet. No mysterious thefts, no unexplainable odors, no reports of elevated pee levels in the public pools. Not much of anything, in fact. It’s strangely quiet in the Rockies.
But they still have five days to go. If you’re looking for the next big news story, keep your eyes on Denver.