|My Early Warning System|
His grandmother shook her head and clucked "spoiled" under breath when she heard it last week. I know the truth though. She's right....only it's a sure sign that it's me who is spoiled and not him.
I've noticed with my children that the more time I spend doing "my" things, the clingier they become. The less time I'm home, the more they whine and demand my attention. #6's neediness is nothing more than a giant alarm blaring that I've been taking too much advantage of having in house child care, and not focusing enough attention on loving him. He's my canary in a gold mine, my early warning system, telling me that my priorities have gone seriously awry.
Life is hectic bordering on frenzy taking care of all the people in this house. I will admit that when I run to the grocery store, there is a part of me which is thrilled to be alone for the half hour or longer that I'm there. I love the silence of my car away from the constant chatter of children on the days when it's just too darn hot to let them go outside. (It was 111* yesterday.) We all get cooped up, the volume rises, and I start to feel claustrophobic in the noise. It must be time to run an errand!!!!!!!! And I can, because there are babysitters living in my house!
Which leaves my 3 year old (Can he really be this old already?)feeling abandoned and left behind.
The big kids can go to friends' houses. His mom can go to the store (and often takes his baby sister with her). #5 is at Grandma's house. Which means that #6 gets left behind all day by people who are going other places, living big adventures, and never including him in them. The poor boy is feeling a bit abandoned, and a little unloved. Which is so totally my fault.
It would not hurt me to spend time every day playing with him on the floor. The bathrooms have waited this long for scrubbing, another half hour won't make them worse. I could take him with me on errands instead of waiting for naptime or leaving him here when he's awake. "It's easier and faster" really isn't an excuse. It's a cop out. It means I'm being lazy, and he's paying the price for it. Which means that all of us are paying the price in whining 3 year old boy.
He huffed "Not fair" this morning as his big brothers set off on their bikes, and he's right. His life hasn't been fair lately. It's my job to fix that. We're getting out of our pajamas and then my newly designated shopping buddy and I are heading out to buy milk, and listen to the awful kid music he loves turned up full blast. And for him....I might even sing along.