I’ve always known that kids need their parents. It was common sense to me, really. The ways in which they need their parents may look different over the years—for food, shelter, clothes, health, learning, emotional support, etc.—but regardless of how it looks, kids need their parents.
Want to know what I didn’t know? How much I would need my kids, too.
This is a rather new revelation for me as, until this fall, I haven’t NOT been around my kids most of the time. I worked part-time until August 2010 when I started working on my PhD. My school schedule my first year kept me busy, but I was only on campus 3 days a week and managed to be home 6 evenings a week. But this fall? This fall all of my coursework was in the evenings and I was on campus 4 days a week instead of 3.
It’s a rather brutal schedule for a mommy.
Luckily my fall semester is almost over and we can put the brutal mommy schedule behind us. But I’m glad it happened. For starters, I take some comfort knowing that my family can survive without me. There was more eating out and a messier house, but we all made it.
Second, I appreciate being aware of how much I need my kids. I fully realized it when we took at trip to San Diego over Thanksgiving. I left work at home and spent a week relaxing and hanging out with my kids. It was marvelous…and definitely needed.
I don’t know, yet, that I fully understand and can articulate why I need my kids. It seems almost too simplistic to say it’s because I love them—it’s more nuanced than that. The closest I can think of to describe it relates to the idea that I can’t imagine my life without them. It’s cliche to say that I can’t remember life without them—I can—but it’s more accurate to say that I can’t imagine not having them in my world. They are infused in so much in who I am and what I do.
I missed my kids this fall and need them. I need to be around their energy, their spirits, even their smell.