I say this often, whether to neighbors or co-workers or the darling pharmacist at our local pharmacy (really anyone that'll listen), summer is just hard on us as a family. It's hard on me, hard on the kids and tough for anyone having to deal with us.
For 3 months the boys have 2 homes and neither full time, flipping on Fridays and staying at each home for 1 week. When I stop to think about what that's like... frankly it's exhausting. Yes, it is very difficult on me as their mother to be away from them for so long so often, but I always find myself thinking how difficult it must be for Conner and Chase. The split possessions, the whole "technically I have two closets and 2 wardrobes and 2 beds" thing, and the constant questioning of what day lands on whose week.
I say it's difficult, but I know they truly enjoy most of the craziness the warmer, school-free months brings. I know they love their father and the time with him is important, and I make dang sure to tell them that often, but that doesn't change my missing them.
My missing them never goes away.
Me understanding the importance of our summer custody schedule doesn't put laughter in my hallways, dirty towels on my floors, or hugs around my neck, but it does help them understand that this is good. And that I am ok.
It's during this time alone (my husband works very late) that I realize how truly lonely I am. I believe for many of us, our spouse is our best friend. Is that the healthiest thing? No, but I also hold the opinion it's not exactly unhealthy either. For me, though, I find that I don't crave friendship when the boys are home, which is also probably not the healthiest for me (but that's another post entirely). Here I am, fully acknowledging the fact that I don't have healthy friendships outside of my husband and children, and that I probably lean too much on my relationship as the boys' mom. I have likely saved myself a co-pay just by typing these words as affirmation.
I think it's easy to hide behind the mom facade. A mom is busy, and therefore, does not have time for friends and social time. Not only do I use this excuse, I practically write the rules for it. Here I am with 3 months of every-other-week child-less time and I spend most of it at my house wishing for my children to come home. I have cleaned their rooms several times. I napped in my eldest's top bunk while holding my youngest's blanket on Sunday, yet if someone were to invite me somewhere I likely wouldn't go.
"I'm busy". I'm busy, alright - busy missing my children and their presence at home.
I received a text yesterday morning from Conner, it read:
I love you.
And another this afternoon:
Hi when am I coming home?
I responded "Friday, baby. Do you need something from home?"
He responded "No. I do not need anything from home. I miss you."
I may never be the best wife, or even a good friend, but I will always have them as my sons. And one day, maybe summer won't be so hard on us, but until then I can only hope Fall comes soon enough.