Sunday, October 23, 2011

Normal days

I know that my posting lately is irregular... at best.  And I'm sorry about that.  I would promise to get better, but let's face it, I probably won't.

And I could come up with some pretty good excuses, sickness, car troubles.... but when it comes down to it, these past few weeks were... well, boring.

I actually sat down to write two or three times, jotted down a sentence or two (can you say jotted when referring to typing?), then fell into something of a coma, staring off at the wall, recycling the monotony of this past week in my head.

Not that I minded.  It was actually something of a welcomed change.  Aiden was out of school for a whole week with belly aches and flus and ear infections... every time I took the kid to his class they bounced him right back to me.

But I enjoyed the lazy mornings.  Actually sitting down with a cup of coffee, wearing our pajamas till 10am, holing up inside, staring out at the damp, cold world while running my bare feet along our warm, tile floor.

Of course there were moments of near insanity.  But they were tempered by train races around the couch, soft pajama snuggles, and, let's be honest, inordinate amounts of television.

Come Friday I needed out of the house just as much as Aiden.  I found myself slipping into a hermit life, and I liked it a little too much.  So with Aiden's health much improved and after only a short internal battle against the lure of my couch, we set off for school, halloween costume in hand.

Aiden seemed to share my hesitance regarding our return to public life, sticking to my side through the Halloween carnival, literally sitting on the floor and picking his nose while children rushed from game to game around him.

But pretty soon he was waving across the room at his little friend, shyly responding to her inquiries about his health ("Are you okay?"), and moving on to things bigger and better than boring, old mommy.

Finn and I survived as well, enjoying some fresh air, socialization, and a large, McDonald's cappuccino.

But as the day commenced at the school's annual "Trunk or Treat" evening, we were ready to retreat once again to our warm, cozy home.  After only a few of many cars, Aiden announced that he was done trick or treating.  He had enough treats and it was time to go home.

No argument there.

So here we are, Sunday night, packed and waiting for our first adventure outside the city limits.  First to Slovenia then on to Venice.

It was a strange sort of deja vu, packing suitcases full or clothes and toiletries, and toys that will probably never emerge from their bags.

It brought me back to those terrifying weeks leading up the this adventure.  I remember laying on our bedroom floor, surrounded by suitcases and their spewed contents, muttering to Joel something about giving up.  That I just can't fit all our stuff in these bags, so, I'm sorry, but we can't go.  It's okay, though, we'll try again next year.

The day of our departure was marked with strange and inexplicable choices that we marvel at to this day.  People we talked to and people we didn't, structured timetables that ended in near sprints through the airport, important items left behind in favor of unusual and mostly useless objects.

And though I miss home in so many ways, those particular memories are best not revisited.

Perhaps if I knew then about this very normal week at home, tending to fevers and tantrums, burning grilled cheese and vacuuming countless crumbs, it wouldn't have seemed so very overwhelming.

But I guess that's the thing with fear of the unknown.

You just don't know.

So now we prepare for our next, small adventure.  And although my family may not know it from my numerous, packing meltdowns today, I think I've learned a little something since then.

First, it is never too early to start packing.  Or to start planning ways to remove the children from the house while you do so.

And second, we can never be totally prepared.  Or in control.  But even the most frightening choices still end in good, bad... and even normal days.

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