The Daughter Chronicles

Monday, January 22, 2007

Why I like Mondays

I know most working people don't like Mondays, because they have to go back to work. But I like Mondays, because someone I know and love does go back to work, and that makes the kids better.

Yes, on Monday my lovely wife leaves the house and goes to work. I'm ambivalent about this. I wish that she could stay home - the six weeks she was off from work was actually pretty nice, all things considered. It was nice having a partner here to help take care of the kids. I could take them off her hands; she could do the same for me. And I know the kids enjoyed it.

But that's part of the problem. I've spoken before of how Krys is the "exotic" parent, and so therefore the kids want her more than they want me. That's fine. I thought her enforced vacation would cure Norah of this obsessive desire to be with Mommy all the time, but it didn't. Each weekend, as much as I like spending time with Krys when the kids are asleep, becomes a grueling session of children being jealous. Mia is desperate to sit with Mommy, and says so a lot. The instant she says "Sit ... Momma ... please," no matter where Norah is, she hears this and comes running. She could be in another room, and she will hurtle in to take Krys's lap. Krys sits with both of them, but that leads to hitting, and as the title of Mia's new book explains, Hands Are Not for Hitting. Even if Krys is not with Mia, Norah follows her around whining to be picked up. If Krys doesn't, she cries. If Krys does, she still whines, albeit more quietly. It's annoying. I know she will grow out of it eventually, but in the present, it makes weekends less enjoyable.

Then, on Monday, Krys leaves. Magically, Norah is perfectly fine. I take Mia to school, so she's out of the picture for a while, and then I hang out with Norah. She plays, she whines a little for me, but not to the degree that she does on the weekend. When Mia comes home, she doesn't scream bloody murder if I hang out with Mia. This afternoon I sat with Mia on the sofa for a few minutes and Norah climbed up and sat next to us, happy as a clam. Right now they're both watching a Sesame Street DVD. Soon Krys will come home. Then the whining will begin.

It's frustrating, because I would love for Krys to be able to stay home with them, and I'm sure that if she did, after a few months Norah would get over her jealousy. Can't we fast-forward to the days when she doesn't want anything to do with her parents?


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