Last night, I dropped my son off at my in-laws’ house to spend a few days with them while I attend the BlogHer Conference in San Jose. Normally, I rev myself up in anticipation of having time alone, but end up feeling wistful and almost immediately miss Lucas when he’s gone.
That did not happen this time.
I could not get the child to his grandparents’ house fast enough. Turns out, he felt the same way. In the car ride home from pre-school (and before we drove to my in-laws’), my son whined no less than 54 times about how he wanted to go to Casa King City, he wanted to go to Ama Lety’s house, he wanted to go see the fans (he loves fans more than he loves me), he wanted to gooooooo nowwwwwww. Well kid, DON’T WORRY. WE’RE GOING.
We dropped him off, we had dinner, we stuck around for a bit. Then, when it was time to say goodbye, we reminded Lucas that he’d be staying, and we would be back for him in a couple days. He pushed me out the door, literally took his two hands and shoved at my legs, and said, “Go, Go, GO.” No problem, Lucas. Nooooooooo problem.
This morning, I woke up when my alarm went off. I hit the snooze button. I woke up when it went off again. I stretched and yawned and admired the silence as I lazily strolled to the kitchen and poured myself a cup of coffee. I sat for 20 uninterrupted minutes and drank my coffee while scrolling through Facebook. I took a shower. I shaved my legs. I did not have to make a lunch and pack snacks and brush teeth and wipe an ass that’s not mine and bargain and negotiate and hustle and herd in order to get my son out the door and into the car. I did not spend the next 45 minutes arguing with my son over which snacks he wanted to eat and which songs he wanted me to play while I sat in bumper-to-bumper traffic. I did not have to go to pre-school and put things in Lucas’ cubby and zip him up in his jacket and escort him onto the playground to find his friends. I drove directly to my office, pulled up into my parking spot, and took a moment to tidy the backseat of my car, which looked like the scene of a mass cracker murder.
I was 10 minutes early to work.
I’m not going to lie: birds are singing out of my ass today.
A past me would have felt guilty for feeling this good about my temporary freedom from parenthood. The new me has zero fucks to give. There must be something about being three years old that requires children to systematically torture their parents until they’ve drained them of their patience the same way SoCal has drained California of its water reserves.
Still, I feel for the lad. Being three years old must be challenging. You are gaining all these language skills and fine motor skills, and this means your parents expect more of you, which makes you hella moody because they used to do all this stuff FOR you. There’s a reason why people call three-year-olds threenagers. (Alex, in the background rolling his eyes, goes, “Only white people say shit like that.”) As much as we needed the break from our threenager, though, it’s clear Lucas needed the break from us, too.
So hopefully we all come back together on Sunday well-rested (ha!), rejuvenated, and ready to begin the slow, soul-crushing descent into being the parents of a three-year-old, as well as being the three-year-old son of parents who have no idea how to parent a three-year-old.