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Sadly, I do miss them

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What’s it called when your kid goes away for a week to visit grandparents and you don’t want to miss them, but… you do? Some people might call it pathetic.

At first, you think, "This is going to be great! It’s going to be quiet and peaceful for a whole week!" Then you walk past their bedroom.

You know you miss them when the first thought that goes through your mind isn’t: "How many times do I have to tell him not to leave his wet swimsuit on the floor?" It’s: "Oh my gosh, he forgot to take his swimsuit!"

You shouldn’t miss the daily cajoling, bribing and threatening that goes on when trying to get your youngster to eat something on his plate. However, there’s definitely something tugging at your heart when you set one less plate at the dinner table.

It’s a huge bother to tell a kid to go to bed four hundred times every night, but I would be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the four hundred hugs after each excuse.

"I need a drink of water."

"Didn’t you just have one?"

"I have to go potty again."

"How much did you drink?"

"I have a loose tooth."

"You want some super glue?"

"I think the-re’s a bug in my bed."

"They don’t eat much. Go to bed!"

Still, shou-ldn’t I be enjoying this freedom a little more? It is kind of nice, though, to sit in a shady spot and write without being interrupted by a shout, a cry, or, heaven forbid, a scream. In fact, I could get used to this… I’m just not there yet.

How many days, I wonder, does it take to start enjoying the fact that the TV isn’t permanently set on a channel with squeaky but earnest-sounding cartoon characters with spiky hair? Or that the sofa cushions have remained on the sofa for more than an hour? Why can’t I enjoy the kitchen floor without Cocoa Puffs or Doritos crunching beneath my feet? It’s not as if I like that sort of thing.

It’s kind of nice to walk into the kitchen without seeing a single cabinet door wide open. Like Vanna White, I’d normally stroll in, close three or four of them and then strike a pose next to the refrigerator and wait for someone to buy a vowel. I feel like I should be wearing an evening gown instead of my old fuzzy bathrobe.

Maybe that’s what I’m missing – the feeling of being a glamorous TV game show gofer. No, that’s just silly.

I never felt glamorous, just ticked off.

Still, maybe I’m on to something here. My husband and I should get dressed up and go to a restaurant where not a single chicken nugget or French fry is served, drink some wine, stay out late, take a walk in the park and look at the stars. We should dream a little.

While we dream, we’ll know that grandma and grandpa will take good care of the little darlings. There will be plenty of time to miss them… later.

Laura Snyder is a nationally syndicated columnist, author & speaker. You can reach Laura at lsnyder@lauraonlife.com or visit her website www.lauraon life.com for more info.

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