Sans Steve

Steve has had a very hectic week and was actually away for “a corporate event” aka golf this week, which necessitated an overnight away from home. I actually encouraged him to just ask about booking a hotel because otherwise it meant driving up to MA two days in row and that is just silly. For the record, he DID offer, he always does.His absence is always felt and recognized not just by me, but also by Caroline and of course “Titty.”

I used to fear those rare nights away because it meant that I would feel utterly useless; flailing about the house with the use of only one arm, attempting to bathe and burp solo, and convince a baby that it was indeed “time to go night night, time to go to bed, time to close your eyes, time to rest your head.” I don’t necessarily welcome Mommy Only parenting nights now, but I do feel more confident. I can simultaneously prepare both the next day’s lunch and tonight’s dinner all while entertaining my toddler. I sit down and eat a decent meal from start to finish and she does the same. We slurp a Popsicle together while watching the Be Our Guest song from Beauty and the Beast (note: did not go over nearly as well as the Lion King because HELLO TALKING CLOCKS & CANDLESTICKS??). She brings book after book and I read them all before the announcement that it is time for her tub and we retire to the upper regions of the house for a look at, to pick outfit out for the following day, and fill the bathtub. Seamless. Without incident. Pleasant. These are all words I could use to describe these our night sans Steve.

I could also say lonesome, quiet, confusing (as in what channel are any of the shows on, I just don’t know!!!!! HELP ME!!!). Caroline fell asleep almost as soon as her bath was over and I was left to clean up the remaining evidence of the two hours we spent together; her stuffed bunny lying in the middle of the living room, a sand shovel by the door, her blanket hung from the back of a dining room chair. It was quiet and I relived our little “girls night.” I thought of how she gripped onto me when I was rinsing a dish and asked her for a kiss and she kissed me, well sort of anyway, and there was no one to share it with. She never did that before. I remembered texting twitter because she nodded yes when I asked her if she wanted more because I was so proud of her, but again, no one real to say “our child is brilliant!” with. I dressed her for bed unable to make her laugh the same way Daddy does. I smiled remembering her face when I held up the phone for her to “talk to Daddy” and she appeared so startled that she looked at it with big doe eyes before leaning her head into the receiver and saying “hiii daadaa.” (For the record, I DID prompt her on that one.)

After my baby had long been asleep and I was already 1.5 episodes into “Windsor Castle, A Royal Year” on public television (yes, seriously Steve, that is what I watched in your absence – well that and Top Chef) I looked around, looked down at my stretched out but icy feet and missed my husband. It’s just no fun when he isn’t around, even if it does mean PBS and Top Chef and all the mini peanut butter cups I can eat.


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