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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A place scarier than Hades, more frightening than Oz...

Welcome to the nap-free zone.  This is my world now, the world of the big-girl bed.  Without the crib to keep her prisoner, my daughter howls when I leave the room, demands I read one more bookie than demands "one more toy."  When I give in and offer the toy, the call to battle "one more toy" sounds again from that tiny mouth.  

In my last day as full-time Mom before my return to work, I find our day surprisingly lacking in fun mother-daughter bonding time.  Instead, I fold laundry, clean the bathroom, toss out old food in the fridge, skin and cut apples ("more apples Mama"), wipe up pee, pack up summer clothes (I'm moving in less than a month) and shut my daughter outside my room when she won't stop crying.  In short, a day I've looked forward to since Thankgiving reared its poultry scented head last week is turning out to be a bust.  

I envisioned fun trips to the book store, a visit to the library, perhaps mother daughter pedicures.  Instead I find myself completely overwhelmed by work prep, household chores and a daughter who demands more than I can give right now.  Finally, hoping the nap would give me the time I so desperately need to read or do something for myself, has vanished.  With the bed comes the freedom to get out of it.  Oh she is leaving me alone, I am in my room by myself while I type this with no cries for Mama.  It's a blessing.  But instead of the peace and simple quietude I'd hoped for, I hear legos being tossed around the room, the sound of items falling from closet shelves, what the song "Row, row, row your boat" would sound like if sung by articulate, ravenous, wile coyotes.  

I still savor my time in the my room alone, typing at the computer.  And I will miss my girl as I rush from one errand after another while Eliza is at school tomorrow.  But oh, how I long for a rewind, a way to go back to the start of the day to make it better.  I'd hold off on the laundry or the packing until tonight.  I wouldn't yell at Eliza because she seems to have given up on the potty.  I wouldn't be so damn exhausted.  

Let's face it, Eliza is three and just because she seems incapable of using the toilet consistently doesn't mean she can't develop in other ways.  Many three-year-olds no longer need naps.  She's moving forward, growing up and as long as she plays by herself, at least I have an hour or so to myself without whining.  

Now I have to scare up the energy to get dressed, put in my contact lenses and get out to enjoy something of this day before C and the stepkids descend on me, ravenous for dinner.

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