Dave left today for Seoul for 11 days. Almost 2 weeks of solo parenting in a foreign country at 33 weeks pregnant. It’s going to be tiring and we will be eating a lot of oatmeal and apples for dinner and my hair is going to get REAL greasy and it’s possible there will be days on end where I don’t speak to another adult who can understand me. And yet…
Some secret part of me loves these trips. And in some ways I feel bad that Dave never gets to experience them. Though I have some concerns as to whether he could survive such an experience.
We fill his road trips with plans and schedules. Prenatal yoga class and play group plus a Halloween Party. A few days of daycare so I can work, an apple-picking outing, coffee with a Japanese friend. We keep busy because it makes the days go by faster and makes doing all the bedtime chores myself seem more bearable. We miss Dave’s cheer and his breakfast making and the way he can make any chore seem to be an adventure. Plus he rubs my feet at night.
But there also things we do just because Dave is gone. We walk around the block picking up leaves and sticks at a pace that would make him crazy. We do art projects that create messes that give him a nervous tick. I let her make wands with spaghetti and watch them break into a million pieces with the intention of vacuuming them up…within a few days. We take naps holding hands. We watch Planet Earth together followed by an episode of The Mindy Project….you know, for educational reasons. We pretend it’s us against the world with the safety and luxury of knowing it really isn’t. It really isn’t at all.
By the time Dave gets home in 10 sleeps from now, I will be read to pass the torch. I will want to take one of those showers so long and so hot you are sure you are single-handedly ruining the environment. I’ll want some quiet time with a book or the internet. I’ll want a nap at a non-standard nap time. I will want someone else to do the damn dishes. But the build up to that is a beautiful, painful exercise in patience and a lovely, precious snapshot in time for me with my girl.