Come on in, the family's fine

By Published On: February 20th, 2012

Written by: Rachel February 20 2012 This was a lazy […]

Written by: Rachel

This was a lazy weekend, one of pillow forts and picnics in front of the TV and sprawling puzzles on the dining room table, visited and abandoned and revisited later when the mood struck. It's the kind of weekend we've only just arrived to at this stage of the parenting game. The actual, bona fide, loaf around and read a book and maybe-take-a-nap-if-I-don't-mind lazy weekend.

We went out for breakfast on Saturday morning, scattered, smothered and covered style.

Luke's mom was in town, meaning that our booth was full up—two on one side, two on another and a seat pulled up to the end. We bumped elbows and piled up plates and reached over each other's food to grab the syrup, all the while enjoying a pretty calm affair. A7-year old, a 3-year old and three adults, hashbrowns, coffee and a heap of bacon too big for us to finish. No highchairs, no squirming to get down, no crawling under the table on the sticky floor. Rosie ordered for herself (Iwant Mickey Mouse! With syrup! And my own water.) and Noah cut his waffle with a fork and knife, no assistance required.

Afterwards there was an impromptu trip to the store for toilet paper and lightbulbs, an all-family on deck outing with Noah pushing the cart and Rosie tagging along, sometimes walking, sometimes hitching a ride.

These days we don't worry about naptimes or having diapers on hand or fitting a trip around a feeding schedule. Our time can be leisurely, unhurried. We're free in a way that we haven't been in a long while. It's as if we've just started really learning how to be a family, with our own patterns and quirks and favorite Saturday morning restaurants.

So much of caring for an infant revolves around survival—theirs and yours—that it can be easy to lose all your days to a haze of sleeplessness and spit up and the constant need to fill tiny bellies. I've only just started to see what comes later on. Your kids start to show you who they are. They grow and change and need you less (or differently, at least).They develop relationships with each other, apart from you, with inside jokes and rolled eyes and secrets whispered under blankets propped up with dining room chairs. They offer up a joke and you really laugh, genuinely and from the belly. They make themselves a sandwich. They brush their own teeth. And you watch and marvel just as much as you did in the days they learned to sit and crawl and take their first wobbly steps.

So while we may not have as much room on our laps as we did when there was only one to raise, we do have a lot of good to offer up for this baby on the way. We have the perfected art of a lazy weekend to show him, and the secret to a perfect pillow fort. And a whole lot more that I may not ever be let in on, but will be watching from afar with a smile.