Four Days of Solo Parenting

Even though Colin was released from his calling (responsibility) at church as the Young Men President in the spring, he was still asked to participate in the “Super Activity” the boys had organized months ago. Since they had planned a mountain biking trip to Ojai and Colin was the only person who knew anything about bike repair, his presence was essential.

That meant that for four days I would be with four children under the age of 7 by myself. Day and night.

Again, I know many of you do this sort of thing all the time. I realize I’m spoiled. But it was a big deal for me to mentally prepare for this adventure.

Luckily, the daytime routine was business as usual and so I knew what to expect. But the nights. Oh the nights! Silly me, I had hoped to have some time to work on things when the evening came, especially since all four kids go to bed at 7PM. It would be my time to recover.

It was not my week for such expectations. Both Jake and Joey decided to cut three additional teeth. Add to that Joey’s ear infection and I wound up holding at least one baby from about 7:30 until my bedtime at 10:30PM, plus intermittent wakings during the night. Very, very exhausting. And I couldn’t even work on the computer (I’m not good at one-handed typing) so I was stuck watching old episodes of thirtysomething. A disappointing week for checking off my TO DO list.

I was so happy to see Colin pull into the driveway that Saturday morning, though he was slightly worse for the wear. Despite having a good time, overall, he fell on the first day of the trip and scraped up his knee and arm and sprained his thumb. By the time I saw the damage, most cuts had scabbed over and the bruising on his inner wrist from the sprain had lessened. But his pain was still pretty bad. At least he was home, relatively safe and sound.

The four days, though more tiring than usual, turned out fine. Good friends, Leslie and Rebi, came to my rescue and watched the other three kids while I took Joey to the doctor to treat his ear infection and then had us over to their house that evening for dinner and smoothies in the warm summer air. Mary Karlee and her kids joined us for lunch and conversation on Wednesday. Just the kind of breaks I needed. The days passed more quickly thanks to time with them.

In the end, though I found I could pull it off successfully without major breakdown, injury, or turmoil, I realized that having Colin around is more than just the convenience of his assistance, though I do appreciate that benefit. I just really like having him around. I miss him when he’s gone.

Yes, I can do it solo, but I’m glad I don’t have to all the time.

2 thoughts on “Four Days of Solo Parenting”

  1. Go you!!! And, I’m so glad that you had good friends to be around. Are you amazed that you can even live life sometimes? I feel that way. It’s by the grace of God that I’m hanging on by a thread sometimes!

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