those of you keeping up know that greg has just recently been home for ten days straight (!!!). and no, we haven’t begun divorce proceedings. yay us. anyways, yesterday was the first day that ruth and i awoke alone, no greg reading nearby, out raking leaves, drinking coffee all morning long. just us. i admit, the house felt a bit deserted, empty and cavernous as we looked at each other as though to say, “now what?” we each sort of scrambled about, unsure what to do with ourselves, until suddenly, we didn’t any more.
oh, yeah, i thought, my life. the life i’ve been living here for the past two and a half years. that’s right. i know how to do this, if nothing else. now, i’m not saying that it’s always easy and that it doesn’t have its ups and downs. but, and don’t tell greg this, there is something nice about having my little domain back to the way i’m used to it.
greg is great, but he’s got a certain way of, how can i put this, causing chaos and destruction. ok, maybe he just doesn’t do things the way i do them. he hasn’t, like me, for the sake of his sanity, acquired the skill, is it really a skill, c’mon, of picking up stuff as he goes so that the house stays in pretty good order all day. he leaves messes in one room to go on to make more. living in as small a house as we do, soon, you can’t even swim through the piles of stuff to retrieve the mail before you know it. also, he has his own agenda, which i find really annoying. as soon as i gear myself up to do one thing, there he goes off to do another. that’s what happens when you are raised like an only child, i suppose. and the list of stuff we were going to accomplish over the break? oh, all of the things he added got done, you bet. the only ones left without check marks next to them would be the ones in my handwriting. but enough about the nit-picky things that a relationship degrades into.
on top of the fact that there is a definite sense of order and organization restored (wow, type a, lady), there is something else which i didn’t necessarily realize that was missing restored yesterday. and that is, mine and ruth’s special relationship. now, don’t get me wrong. i love family time. the times when it is the three of us together out and about or chilling at home, are my favorite times. there is something so whole and complete about those times. for all of the chaos and disorder he brings, greg also adds a sort of spontaneous, fun feel to the group that shakes things up, and refreshes all of our outlooks. but, there is also something very special about mine and ruth’s time alone together.
i didn’t really realize this either, but ruth is different around greg. he is more high energy than me, less attentive, more spontaneous. i am more quiet (thoughtful), less active, and no, that doesn’t translate into lazy, and i have a longer attention span. what do i owe it to? well, i think it’s partly my nature, but partly because i decided to be a stay-at-home mom, that i have nothing but time to devote to dealing with ruth, whereas greg is in adult-active-man-mode a lot of the time. even while at home. even while on vacation. it’s hard to shut that off. me, though, i’m on ruth time. toddler time.
when it is just the two of us, things are different. she is less active, less apt to run around, more apt to play quietly with her toys, but more intently. she and i get really into her make-believe games, which is her favorite thing in the world. not only that, though, another thing i never really thought about is that, while greg is around, things are more chaotic because there is the dynamic between he and i thrown into the mix, our relationship. then, of course, ruth’s relationship with him mingled in with her relationship with me. like i said, good times, but different. when it is just the two of us, it is simple. just our dynamic, the way we relate to each other.
this vacation with greg has been great. we got a lot of yard work done, took many field trips, and just enjoyed being a family, something that can be difficult when work is always getting in the way and you get caught up in the every day grind. but this time with greg has also caused me to really appreciate my time alone with ruth, and to realize that it will probably be one of the most special times in my life that i will look back upon when she’s all grown up.
so, like i said, don’t tell greg.