From the Mommy Files…

The Patients are Gone, or Do We Mean PatienCE?

Posted on: July 3, 2010

Our patients have been discharged. We drove them home yesterday. Our house is remarkably quiet. I was looking forward to a little peace and quiet, but I have to say, it’s too quiet.

Did I just say that?

It was a pretty good week. The girls had so much fun playing with Big G. He loved having other kids around – he’s an only child.

Come to think of it, that was probably the most time I’d spent with my brother – continuously – since before I went away to college.

My brother is a jokester. So we had “Uncle Clowny” (a nickname he bestowed upon himself a few years back) and BooBoo, my little clown. This time, Bebs really got into the act. She showed her ability to generate some laughs this week.

We can always count on Boo for silliness, but Bebs was in rare form. Perhaps she felt it was a new audience, and she had to work the room.

She’d pull out all kinds of toys and things, and present them, making funny noises and saying goofy things.

The other morning she pulled out the bunny ears and put them on her head. She crawled to the breakfast nook. “Ba da!” she announced. (her version of tada) As soon as we had a look, she was gone. On to the next trick, I guess.

Bebs played peek-a-boo, and was very excited about it. And don’t you say boo – let her do it!

She put blocks on her head, books, and just cracked herself up.

When we play outside, well, this little one can’t sit still. This is how it goes: I put her on the grass. She watches me. As soon as Boo distracts me somehow, she takes off down the sidewalk. Think “Baby’s Day Out.” I tell her she’s going to cut up her knees, but she doesn’t care. She’s thinking “I’m free!” and she giggles and screeches. Once and a while we get a “Whoa ho!”

Then she heads right for the stairs. She starts crawling up the stairs. I pick her up and put her in the grass. This scene repeats itself over and over. I get tired of it and we go in the house, much to the chagrin of Boo and Big G.

Oh. Time for medicine. Big G? Uncle Clowny? OK, medicine done. Then it’s time for lunch. This, that, whatever had to be done. Play school, play games, put Bebs down for a nap. Then it would be time to make dinner. I’d put the kids to bed and feel like I accomplished nothing that day. No work, no laundry – nada.

By the last day, Big G had it with the house rules. He’d had it with being put in time out or called out for his poor attitude, lack of sportsmanship or refusal to share. He is an only child, but there is respect, and there is following rules in someone else’s home. I can’t change what he does at home, but if you want to come to my house, you’ll follow the rules. He was so ready to go.

He was upset that I wouldn’t let him go outside alone and insisting we all go together – someone had to watch him. The little one doesn’t cooperate, so what do we do? So we didn’t spend a lot of time outside. He insisted he was big enough to be outside alone. He’s 6-1/2. Maybe 30 years ago that was big enough, but not these days. Call me over protective, but someone has to supervise.

Uncle Clowny was anxious to get to his own house, and back to his own routine. You’d think he’d welcome a real meal – everyone sits together and eats a home cooked meal. He’s a single dad. He doesn’t cook, but I guess a day of that is fine, but several in a row make him feel restricted somehow. What can I say? Oh, and the horror! There’s no satellite TV in the guest room! It’s on the lower level and we use it a few times a year. So why pay for the box/hook up in there?  So, believe it or not, he watched Jerry Springer all day. I gave him a hard time about that. I’d tell him, “What? My brother turned into trailer trash?” He’d chuckle.

I wanted my TV back too. Uncle Clowny and Big G are very into racing, and on more than one occasion, we were all forced to watch racing for a couple of hours (remember, there’s no satellite downstairs). Big G likes to watch cartoons I don’t find suitable for kids. Then my husband would come home and want to watch the latest Wimbledon match. So, needless to say, we had a struggle for the remote.

They were both ready to go. I had gotten so far behind on work, and just wanted to catch up. I really liked having them here, but I guess it was time for everyone to go back to their own lives, their own ways of doing things.

We drove them home. I came back home and sat down to do some work. Fat chance. I just felt spent. Tomorrow was another day.

The patients are gone, and luckily, my patience didn’t go – well, maybe a little. Hey, no one’s perfect. We all survived – intact – and still speaking. What else can you ask for?

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