I’ve been MIA for the last few days or so, because of a very sad turn of events. Before I get into details, a little back story… My husband’s been to India for work 7 times in 15 months. This, we realize, is insanity. Most people who need to be in another country that much, would have the sense to just stay there longer term and get it over with, rather than go back and forth that many times. He and I, however are slightly insane and tend to take a little longer than the average person to recognize a sensible path.
The interesting thing about these trips is that every time he leaves, something pretty crazy happens. For most of the trips, it’s something pretty mainstream, such as a child who is sick, or daycare closes for some random reason and I can’t work because I have to care for little people. Being as that I’m self employed, there are no paid sick days, so that can be pretty stressful, and until very recently, anything stressful put me into an (extremely over-reactive) tailspin.
What’s more memorable are the truly crazy things that happen when he’s gone, such as Hurricane Irene, which left us without power (or daycare) for 5 days. Even worse was (in October!) Winter Storm Alfred, which left us with trees falling on our house, no power (and no heat) for 6 days, just a month after that bitch Irene left her stupid-bitch mark.
I whined a lot during those storms. Being alone with two people under age 5 during those storms sucked. I didn’t like being cold. I didn’t like shoveling my own driveway, and I especially didn’t like losing my damn wallet the day after the storm (I am an ass). But I’m not a complete idiot, I know there are plenty of single mamas out there who had to brave those trials without a man to depend on. That’s forefront in my mind the whole time I’m whining like an insipid twat. I just can’t help myself, I’m spoiled, OK!?
So, it’s been a bit of a joke among our friends that every time he leaves, something terrible happens, so he can’t go anymore, because the world could end! We all laugh about it, but deep down I see we’re all a little freaked out by the apparent truth here.
So, he left again about a week ago. Three days later, our much-loved friend, who also happens to be our daycare provider, died. She died. Tragically, unexpectedly at the age of 37. We’ve gone from natural disasters, to actual deaths. No more trips, mkay?
We felt we’d found the best home daycare we could possibly hope for. There were 3 licensed adults running it, which is unusual for a home daycare. They are a family from Puerto Rico. They really get the value of a warm, loving environment for little kids. Our late friend, the matriarch of the daycare (I’ll call her Bea) was very driven to turn her home daycare into a preschool. In one year I watched her go out into the world and do just that. And just one week after our first week of “daycare preschool”, she just… peaced out on us. She was 37, and had a stroke, and that was that.
The daycare is now closed, forever. Almost exactly one year after I’d made this epic decision to go from a stay at home, attachment mom, to a full time worker bee. Almost exactly on the 5 year anniversary of my own father’s death. Weird. Sad. Strangely, quiet.
I keep feeling like tomorrow is “daycare day”. Then I remember. I’m completely unprepared with the notion of looking for a new daycare. I feel almost like I’d be cheating on Bea.
I’m taking this time to just be quiet in the weird space of grieving. I’m also choosing to be sad when I want to be sad, happy when I want, and numb when I want. I’m also choosing to be really amazing and sweet to my beautiful kids, because they deserve that all the time, not just when they lose someone they love. It’s also my choice not to worry about how the work is going to get done. Because the work always gets done, doesn’t it? And then there’s more work. And we do it. And then there’s more. And that, is life. And life can be lame, and awesome, and boring, and exciting, and ugly, and glorious, all at the same time. And all we can do, is ride the wave with a stupid, glorious, trusting smile.