An empty calendar

I’m still struggling to wrap my mind around age 3. Patrick seems so much more grown up. He’s doing so much more than I ever imagined on his own.

And I’ll admit that, while I’m excited about the 6 hours a week that I’ll have to myself while he’s in preschool, I am having a bit of a hard time with the idea of being away from him for 6 hour a week.

But right at this moment, I’ve been given a rare gift.

My calendar for the past 2 weeks has had one appointment on it. A 15 minute appointment scheduled for tomorrow morning.

Right after signing Patrick’s adoption papers, there was nothing more I could do than just sit in his hospital room with him and just get to know him, love him, enjoy him.. because we were waiting for everyone else to get things in order to bring him home. Those were some of the best days of my life.

This year, again Patrick and I are spending most of our days alone together, just the two of us. Meanwhile, the doctors and dietician and their nurse and the district and school nurses have been meeting and working on Patrick’s healthcare plan so he can go to school.

And while we let other people hammer out the details of the paperwork (and try not to call too often to offer help), I am able again to get to know him, love him, enjoy him.

Sure, we’re making each other a bit nuts. He wishes I’d just quit trying to accomplish things and play with him. I wish he’d quit tugging on my arm while I try to type or quit emptying my laundry basket as I fold the laundry.

But inbetween that, we have played playdough and taken him around the neighborhood on his new tricycle and eaten forbidden treats together. (Patrick loves cookies and chocolate. And is not supposed to have either.) We went to Barnes and Noble for story time, which was fun but too short. Then we went to library story time and that was much more fun, but some of the books were too long. We renewed my driver’s license, which took 2 hours and was no fun, but afterwards as a reward, we went and got french fries and played on the slides at Arctic Circle, which almost made up for it.

We’ve had tickle fights on the bean bag chair. We have read every book in his bedroom at least once, and Mr. Brown Can Moo at least 3 times a day. We’ve eaten lots of pretend food. We have played playdough on the living room floor. Patrick broke his line, which wasn’t fun, but also wasn’t too hard to fix.

I took him to his first theater movie yesterday. We saw Cars 2 at the dollar theater in the 3:00 matinee. We arrived twenty minutes late, just on time to catch the last seconds of the last trailer. Patrick was afraid of the theater at first and just cried, but once he saw Toy Story with Mr. Potato Head on the screen, it was ok… so long as I covered his ears.

He got good at putting my hands on his ears when it go too loud, then he’d check to see if it was still loud by uncovering them, then quickly putting them back on.

His line came disconnected half an hour into the show and I didn’t catch it till my lap was full of blood. But he was ok, and the TPN had just ended, so we sat down on the theater floor and I disconnected him.

It’s good we had the theater to ourselves.

Then he ran down to the front of the theater to see the screen up close. And then ran up and down the aisle for about 15 mintues, asked to leave, then as soon as we were out the door, begged to go back.

He stayed for the entire movie.

Today the dietician called for help completing the school district’s medical forms. That means that this little break is drawing to a close.

I’m both incredibly anxious for him to go to school and sorry to see it end.

I like sleeping in and not having any rush to bathe and get dressed. And I like playing on the floor with Patrick all afternoon. And I’m not sure I’m quite ready for my little boy to start doing such a big boy thing.

But I know he’s lonely. He misses his therapists and he misses his friends from his classes and he’s ready to move on.

And really, so am I.

But I’m grateful that I’ve been given these few weeks again… just like I had with him right after we met.

And soon we’ll be ready to face age 3 head on.

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