After a week of "vacation" -- visiting relatives with two children and no husband -- I am back, more than ready to settle in and not go ANYWHERE for a millennia or so.
Of course, it's not a real vacation with two small children clutching at one's thigh, unwilling to let go even in their sleep in the offhand chance that Mommy might go somewhere REALLY FAR AWAY (like the bathroom) without them.
Ah, it's an exotic life I lead, folks.
The six year old is especially puzzling. If he is in his room playing, every ten minutes (give or take a minute) he will appear at the top of the stairs and shout: "Mom! Moooooooooooom!"
(pause.) "I love you..."
"Yes, Christopher, I'm still here. Go play."
Every twenty minutes, he will actually bound down the stairs into the kitchen or my bedroom or wherever else I am and say, "Hey! Did you MISS ME?"
Now is not the time for the unvarnished truth. "Oh, yes, Christopher. Heaps."
Interestingly, my sister Chris said that it was Sarah who carried on the loudest and longest the time I went to the drug store for twenty minutes unescorted. (THAT was my vacation.) "I don't get it..." she said. "You've had her since she was six months old. In every other respect, she is a confident little girl. What's the screaming about?"
Well, two things, I'm guessing: She has an older brother who is freaking out, and so she thinks she should get in on the action. And second, she never misses an opportunity to exercise those lungs.
We cut out of my sister's house a day early -- my nerves were shot, and the kids' behavior was degenerating more rapidly than a snowman in Hades. I hated that -- my sister is one of my favorite people. But because I'm one of hers, she didn't hold it against me.
Cause that's what family does... They stick together, no matter what. Right?