Thanks to everyone who commented on the last post. Your comments have now been published. I was in the UK all week for work and found that my blackberry would not let me publish your comments and was too cheap to hop on an Internet cafe computer at 1 pound per 10 minutes which is roughly $2 for 10 minutes.
Pictures to follow. Dave and Ellie got on so well without me was a bit disconcerting... ;-)
This is one of the ways I definitely notice that my kid is NOT typical. When I can leave for 7 days and not have them really show any emotion that I am leaving, am gone and then am back. I would ask to talk to Ellie on the phone and she would intone messages to me and that was great. But there was no disruption to her that was really visible (and thanks to Dave who did a great job looking after her on his own even through the third set of casts that she got on Monday). So her calmness speaks to that and that is a good thing don't get me wrong. But emotionally for me there is a but...
I guess that I am assuming that a typical 5 year old might be a bit more vocal and obvious about the fact that mama is not around and that their emotions would be high at the actual point of departure and the point of return. A typical 5 year old would be able to talk to me over the phone. At 5 almost 6 if your kid is typical you get to have conversations with them. But there was none of that. And you know what, that hurt. Not that I want her to be sad, but I would like to be a blip on the radar - even a tiny one. I would have liked her to at least be asking Dave for mama or for her to want me in particular when I got back. But no.The moment I walked in she indicated that she wanted me to help her change her video. At first I thought she was requesting to sit on my lap (which made me feel like she did miss me) and then realized that she was pointing to the magna doodle on the chair that had video choices on it.... sigh.
It's the little things sometimes that are the most painful. And my heart is a bit crushed to not even be a blip on her radar because the entire time I was away from them, though I got on with things, it was really hard. I really missed them both. Mama's can have needs too though this whole thing with Ellie has been an exercise in putting my own needs aside. I find the other-centeredness of parenting to be really freeing though I am not totally without ego or need.
Is this why people in middle age become so decrepit? They are just valued for their workhorse capacities and not much more? Versus the petulance of one's 20's where beauty and love are the main themes? If so, I can't wait until I am 80.