Last mopey one for a bit. OK, dear readers?
Last night I was at the House, part of my exercise in trying and failing to be here while also trying and failing to have moved out.
At 4.30 AM, Winton got up to pee, knocking on his father's door and getting his father to take him even though I was home, door open and even, as it turns out, awake. Ouch. My "baby" (he's five) doesn't come to me in the night anymore.
But: it's only ouch for me. This doesn't actually hurt anyone else as keenly as it does me, so in the great game of trying to raise happy children, it doesn't matter. Winton peed. He was happy. He didn't need me to be there for him.
I have spent seven years parenting on the model that being there was the most important thing I could do.
Am I still there for the children if I sometimes not here (as in physically with them)? How do I pull that off?
Do I need to be X % better, happier, livelier, more attentive, more loving, more perceptive, more more more when I am with them because of the time when I am not? (Oi. That's just a bit of pressure, innit?)
So much of this is about my own ego, sense of purpose and insecurity about every damn thing: if the kids don't need me, what (cue the orchestra of tiny violins to serenade my self-pity), what am I worth as a human being and a mother?
But the kids do need me. And their father. They need both.
And this curent nesting arrangement is, as far as I can tell, fine for the children. Possibly it is fine even for their father (it must occasionally drive him nuts though, surely: like having an intermittent but obtrusive roommate).