Well, for three more hours.
I finally did it. I finally got a regular babysitter to watch both kids for a few hours a week. This is the first time since Graham was born that I’m alone without feeling guilty about foisting the two of them on a family member. Why didn’t I do this sooner? Well, actually I didn’t need to for a while. Violet had her Mother’s Day Out, three mornings a week. Graham mostly slept during that time, or sat around like Chipper Lump Zen Baby. I could go grocery shopping, get a haircut, go to a doctor or dentist, clean the house, prep dinner, sit and have a cup of tea. It was a pretty nice routine there for a while.
Then, of course, things had to change. Graham slept less and less and Violet didn’t want to go to school more and more. It got to the point where I was battling with her from the second she got up to the second her teacher had to peel her off of me. (There was nothing wrong at her school. She loves her friends and teachers and has a great time while she’s there. She’d just rather be at home right now. And that’s okay.) Then I would drive home, put Graham to bed, shower, maybe do the dishes, get Graham up, feed him, then put him in the car to pick up Violet. I was getting nothing done and it was far from the little break I needed to collect myself enough to get our family through the week. Of course I was in total denial about this for a long time. But we finally decided to pull her out of the MDO program and use that money to hire a professional. Granted, 12 hours at a MDO is equal to 4 hours of sitting. I guess it’s cheaper to deal in bulk, whether it be canned goods or childcare. Kind of blows my mind, though, when I remember I got paid $2 an hour during my babysitting days.
Right now it seems like I can accomplish anything in 4 child-free hours. I have a list a mile long. But I’m trying to remember to sometimes do something enjoyable and not necessarily productive with those hours. (Which is why I’m at a coffee shop snuggling up to the internet.) The whole house will benefit from a more sane me.