Friday, August 28, 2009

my uterus hurts tonight

The house is soooo empty tonight. It suddenly feels cavernous.

There's no fighting, no yelling, no laughing, no tattletaling, no giggling in bed when they should be sleeping, no last minute pitter-patter runs to the potty.

There's just me. And the giant TV. And, of course, the dogs.

And I know it's a good thing, and I know how excited they were about it, and I know how much Amy needs this, too. And I'm grateful that this is even an option, and I'm grateful that Amy and I continue to work together so well, and I'm grateful for the possibilities that abound.

Everything about this is absolutely fine. But they're having a sleepover at Mommy's apartment tonight, and I have pangs in my uterus where their little bodies used to be, my arms are just aching from their absence, my ears ringing from the deafening silence, and my heartbeats on pause til we're together again.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

the comforter: a memoir

Me: I think I've moved over to your side of the bed permanently. Has it always been this comfortable and you just never told me, or is this just a recent development?

Amy: I guess the memory foam has forgotten me already.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


Lost tooth #2 last night, and he was just giddy with excitement.

Meanwhile, I glare over at Saia, who is snootily bragging to him about how she's already lost two teeth of her own and is now frantically trying to yank out a third... with both hands... and a pair of pliers.

Finally convince her, through gritted teeth, to say 'congratulations' to him, and am suddenly overwhelmed by this sense of dread over this burgeoning and unstoppable sibling rivalry for (at least) the next 12 years of my life. And you wouldn't think so, from looking at them, that they have any reason to compete with one another. They're just complete opposites in all they do, in how they think, in their innate mode of functioning. But, man, it's just exhausting trying to keep them from one-upping each other every single second of every single day.

And the worst part of it all is that I do realize that this truly is just the tip of the iceberg. That it has the potential, especially because they're twins and will likely share common friends, teachers, etc., to be really really awful. And I just think maybe I need to start putting together an emergency plan of action now.

[Oh, and, by the way, somewhere around midnight, I was finally able to unearth a piggy bank from somewhere beneath Newspaper and Bubble Wrap Mountain, and managed to squeeze out four quarters for the toothfairy, who, by the way, only really travels with plastic these days and, who, by the way, really does prefer it that way. Except, of course, in moments of lost teeth. And parking meters.]

Monday, August 17, 2009

she's just not an easy one to quit

can't seem to get back into a writing routine. half of my life is still in boxes. the other half lives in an apartment 5 miles away.

the kids seem to love it here, though. they're settling in, making their mark. even the dogs seem more at ease than before.

and it's a great house. it is. i feel safe and comfortable here. and we're really really lucky, i know, to have found such a great place in such a short amount of time, with me not even working. believe me, i get that we're being watched over. i do.

and it is all coming together. slowly but surely. trinket by trinket. and feeling more and more like a home every day. and it's good. and it's bad. because it's still missing her. us.

and although we see her nearly every day, it's not the same. of course it's not. she's not here when we go to sleep. and she's not here when we wake up. she's not here in the middle of the night when i hear a strange noise. she's not here when there's a stranger knocking on the door. she's not here when i wake up crying in the middle of the night and reach, still, for the other side of the bed.

but the kids have transitioned surprisingly well. they sleep through the night, which is always a good sign. and they sooo look forward to seeing her. and it's in those moments when i question whether or not i made the right decision (and there's a pretty constant stream), that the look on their faces when they hear her come thumping around the corner in her car, or they see her coming up the walk from their bedroom window, or she rings the doorbell and they immediately run off to play hide and seek with her before she's even stepped inside, is all i need for confirmation.

sort of.

because we're getting along better than either of us could've hoped for, i think. it's become easy and comfortable again. feels almost normal again, as much as i loathe that word. but i have this constant dread in the pit of my stomach. waiting, waiting, waiting...for the other shoe to drop. for my feet to be swept out from under me. for it all to go away. again.

i don't want to rely on her for anything, to look to her for anything, to need or want or wish for anything at all from her. because the risk of disappointment is just too great, and i'm just a little tapped out in that department.

but she's not an easy one to quit.

because the thing is that we're such a huge part of one another's lives, have been each other's best friend for so long, that's it's such a natural place to gravitate to. and right there, right there is the danger, of course. because the reasons that we're not together anymore still do exist. and the fact that they're buried under boxes, and aching, and fresh starts, and longing, and new lives, and sadness, and glimmers of lights at the end of tunnels doesn't make those reasons any less real.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

don't forget to sweeten the lemonade

Deciding to stay was one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make.

But day after day, night after night, it hit me like a billion little shards of glass how much this was hurting them. And even though my reasons for needing to move away, for needing to break away from her, for needing to find a way to start over, for needing to make a new life on my own were all right and true and good, I just could not, could not, ever seem to be able to justify it to my children.

And I tried. I did. I rationalized it six ways from Sunday, I did. But as a parent, I think you find that even when your oh-so-intelligent and wisely witty answers to the constant barrage of "why," "why," "whys" begin to circle back to the same answer, the battle is done.

So I posted to my Twitter and Facebook a link to the concept of Occam's Razor last week as I was struggling and aching and knee-deep in the middle of this dilemma. And it's been pounding in my head since then.

The simplest explanation is often the right one.

But whether or not I could actually apply it to our situation was a whole 'nother story.

Could that really work? Could I swallow this pill? The pit in the middle of my stomach was growing every second. Everything felt wrong. Every decision meant someone was going to be hurt. What do I do? What should I do? What's the right thing to do?

And then it happened.

I took myself out of the equation.

And the answer was clear.

And I felt a sudden wave of relief. And I saw it in their eyes when I told them. Because they were bursting, just bursting with what I really can only describe as joy, and I don't use that word. But I felt it in the air between us. All of us. And I knew, somehow, that it was right, would be right...someday.

And no, it doesn't mean I don't recognize that I still need to find a way to heal, that I need to ensure that we're all getting what we need out of this, and that the lemonade still has to be sweetened.

I get that. I do.

But today, my family is happy. And there's not much I wouldn't give for that.