I’m having a wonderful visit with family this weekend, really the first in a long while. The last few visits have been marred by stress about dealing with my stepfather and my baby daughter not sleeping well. This time things seem to have improved.
Well, I guess I should clarify. The first night my daughter (8 months) slept about 8 hours total – not all in a row either. My total sleep over the course of the night was about 5 hours (not in a row, unfortunately!). Last night was a vast improvement, despite the fact that I was completely paranoid about the possibility of her waking up. I actually got a good night of sleep!
As for my stepfather, this visit is improved because I’ve not been around him much. Add that to the fact that for the first time in a very long time I’ve been free to visit with my mother alone (well, without him) and you’ve got the makings of a good visit. It has been so wonderful to be able to freely talk with my mother and to see her freely enjoying time with her grandchildren. It seems like most visits, my stepfather finds reasons to keep her away from them – not this time. Yay!
It has been a relaxed visit, which has been good for me and my husband, as well as all of the family. We’ve had wonderful home-cooked meals, rather than trying to rush around eating out or visiting a lot of folks over meals at restaurants. It has been a slower pace and that has been great. My husband has managed to get out two nights now to see friends (and his brother), which is great for him.
I am beginning to see that there are two things that I need more of in my life and both of them surprise me. I need family visits more than I thought. I’ve been pretty independent since I was in my late teens. When my husband and I moved to the northern part of the state about 4 hours away from family, I never looked back. I never experienced homesickness. Now, I’m finding that I want a better relationship with my mother. I want to see my aunts and uncles a bit more. Maybe it is the fact that I’m a mother now. I don’t know – but it is an interesting change after all these years.
The second thing that I’ve noticed that surprises me is that I need to get out among people. I am an introvert and generally speaking, I’m happy at home. Working in offices stresses me and I used to go home and just try to shut out the world. Well, I’ve been a homemaker for about 4 years now (also a college student for 3 of those years). Since I stopped taking college classes, I’ve been pretty isolated. I realize now that I do need contact with the outside world. I’ve been out of classes for two semesters and I am ready to get back in touch with the world. My friends and I are starting to get back together – for now, it is once a month – and it means more to me than I can say. I think I’m going to put more effort into finding a play group or a Mom’s group to join.
Of course, I am trying to find a job. When I get one, that will certainly change my contact with the world situation. We shall see if I approach it differently now that I’ve been out of things for so long.