Weekends with the ‘Rents

This past weekend, my parents came for a visit to “see the new baby” and go to my nieces’ dance recital. Why is that in quotes? Because this is not really what happened. And I am not surprised in the least.

When my parents decided to move out of state, they promised to visit often since all of their children and grandchildren are here. They were supposed to rotate between staying with my sister or me each time they were here. This only happened a few times before they began staying with my aunt instead. My aunt had cried about not “getting her turn,” but ever since the first time they stayed with her, they have stayed there ever since. Makes me really happy CJ and I spent money we did not have on a bed for them.

I understand my mother feels like she has to see her parents, my dad’s mom, her brothers and sisters, and all her nieces and nephews while she is here, but at the same time, I do not really understand it. She is supposed to be seeing her own children; making her grandchildren feel special. Over an extended weekend, my children got only 45 minutes of uninterrupted attention and an hour of shared attention out at dinner. Did I really mind being taking out to dinner? Not really, but it would have been nicer if it had just been us.

I do not know if she is consciously trying to buy our affections or not, but it really seems like it. She brings gifts every time, pays for dinner, etc. I do not care about any of that. I would much prefer she bring nothing and just spend the time with us that we are promised.

My sister and I have both said something and it seems to go in one ear and out the other. There are too many people vying for her attention and she aims to please. I just wish we rated a little higher on the list.

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Every year, there is a catechist dinner for our church school teachers. I look forward to it for many reasons. We get a great meal, I have an excuse to dress up a little, I get a date night night with CJ…

Lately, my children, MJ and Q, have been waking up early – between 3am and 4am early. On top of being exhausted, I have been feeling poorly and that just exacerbated the situation. I made the decision to stay home from the dinner and I am glad that I did as I did not really start feeling better until this evening. Now, it is after 10pm and I am finally feeling better – like I want to move around and do things – only it is time to start thinking about bed if I ever want to catch up on sleep.

Hopefully my children will start sleeping normally again so everyone in the house can start feeling better.

Valentine’s Date

Last night CJ took me out for a Valentine’s/birthday date. It was the first time since MJ was born that I left him for any length of time when he was not already asleep; expecting someone else to put him to bed. On top of that, it was the first time I left Q with anyone other than CJ.

CJ took me for dinner and a movie (compliments of my parents – thanks!) and we did have a lovely time. I really had to control myself though. First, from crying, which started as soon as I walked out the front door of the house. Second, from calling home about one million times while we were out.

I think at first it was hard for CJ to understand my feelings. It is not that I did not trust his parents who were babysitting. I mean, they had four kids and none of them died. It was the fact that I was leaving my babies.

On Sunday mornings when I leave them with CJ so I can teach my church school class, I feel alright because they are with their father and I am doing something important. Last night felt more like being selfish than anything even though CJ insisted that we needed a date night. He, however, leaves the kids all day every day when he goes to work. I am always with them (except for church school, of course). It was hard to conquer the feeling that I was forgetting something and it was really weird to be carrying a purse instead of a diaper bag.

I am proud of the fact that I only asked CJ to call his parents once to check on things between dinner and the movie. I wanted to call after the movie, but knowing everyone might be asleep kept me from asking. I talked all the way home; nervous chatter mostly. I bet if I asked CJ, he would not have any idea what I was talking about last night as for some reason I decided to compare Austenian heroines – something he really could care less about. I could not wait to be home with my babies.

As Q was still awake with her Bubba (CJ’s mom), the first thing I did was check on MJ. It was hard to see him snuggled in his bed knowing I had not said his prayers with him, sang him a song, and tucked him in. CJ’s parents insist it gets easier, but my mother says it does not and I believe she meant it. I can only remember a handful of times when my sister and I were little where they did not take us out with them. Hopefully I will be able to find some sort of middle ground as I am a little young yet to become a hermit. 🙂

Thanksgiving “dinner”

While at home, it is hard to remember that I am a picky eater; I simply make meals that I know I will eat. Occasionally, I make things for CJ and MJ that I know I will not eat, but it is easy enough to make a little something on the side for me.

Yesterday, at CJ’s family Thanksgiving dinner, I was reminded of how picky I am and was beyond embarrassed about it. As dishes were passed around the table, I handed one after the other to people on either side of me. At the end of the passing, I only had turkey and a dinner roll on my plate. I quickly realized that my family’s staples of mashed potatoes and corn were not going to be made available to me and that the things I saw before me were all there was to be had.

My mother-in-law sat beside me and I felt as if her eyes were fixed upon my empty plate. I am so glad that CJ did not bring any extra attention to my predicament. I do not know the last time I was so embarrassed and I do not think I could have handled it if he had tried to tease me about it at the time.

Maybe I was not quite as over being picky as I thought…

Really?

Today is a day of frustration. My sister watches MJ for a few hours on Fridays, between when I leave for work and CJ comes home. I always drop MJ off at 2:00pm. ALWAYS. Today, at quarter to two, my sister called me and said to not drop MJ off at her house – she was out getting her nails done. Are you kidding me? She relies so heavily on my babysitting money to drive her daughter back and forth to preschool that she hounds me about it every week (even though I give it to her the same day every time), yet she has money to blow on a manicure. WTF.

She wanted me to drop MJ off at Walmart, where she was getting her nails done, but I did not want to. He has been sick for the past few days and was finally getting better. I did not want him in and out of cars, running around, etc. Plus, she has two girls of her own to handle while her nails got done.

I really did not have a choice because I do not have someone else to watch MJ. As I was driving to Walmart, my sister tried to call me. My speaker does not work, so I did not answer. She immediately tried to call again so I pulled over to take the call. There had been a change of plans. As her nails got done sooner than she thought and her girls were hungry, they were going to go to Pizza Hut.

I was livid. I did not want him in a public place around other people when he was sick. I did not want her feeding him – we are a paleo family, whether she agrees with that lifestyle or not. She promised she wouldn’t and they would go straight home. I did not believe her.

CJ and MJ always come to visit me on Friday nights on my dinner break. MJ looked terrible when they got here and CJ looked like he was ready to kill my sister. MJ had gone from looking and sounding almost 100% better to being so sick it was heartbreaking just to listen to him breathe. There was no way my sister had taken him straight home.

CJ tries his best not to take his frustrations out on me as he knows she is my sister, but I agree sometimes. I will always love her, but her nonchalance when it comes to the care of MJ really bothers me. I do not have anyone else to watch him while I work and I only work part-time so he can spend most of his days with me. Both CJ and I wish we could figure out a way where I could stay home and he could always stay with me. Plus, my sister is pregnant with baby number three, due in August, and there is no way I am going to let her watch MJ after that.

Most work-from-home jobs do not seem legitimite and they scare me away from even trying to investigate them further. I would love to watch a few children in my home as I used to work at a daycare for three years, but all my ads and fliers do not seem to be doing any good. Hopefully something good comes our way soon.

Sorry about my complaining.