The time has come! At 1:00 this afternoon when the kids get home from school, summer vacation officially begins. I can't believe that the school year is over already. I have the only two kids in the world who are dissapointed when summer vacation starts. Both of my kids really love school and are sad that the school year is over.
Summer vacation is so much different than it was when I was a kid. When I was a kid it was three solid months long. I would get up in the morning, hop on my bike with my friends and no come home until dinner time. There was a public swimming pool about a half mile from my house and I spent a good portion of my summers swimming and eating snowcones from the snowcone stand next to the pool. The taste of a tigers blood snowcone still takes me back to hanging out at the pool as a kid. They taste like summer to me. A few years ago I bought a snowcone maker and ordered a bottle of Tigers blood snowcone syrup. Yum. It was like being a kid again all summer long. Maybe I'll order some more of that this year.
My kids summer vacation only lasts six weeks and we're busy for quite a bit of it. We have a few short vacations planned, they have taekwondo camp for a week, cousins camp at grandmas house for a few days...we have to cram a lot into the six weeks they have off. I feel bad that they don't have three months to just wander free like I did as a kid. We don't live in a rural area like I did as a kid. My boys can't just hop on their bikes and ride for miles like I did. They don't really know the difference and we make summer vacation fun for them, but I know what they're missing and it makes me a little sad for them every summer.
In other news, I did something scary today! I left Clarissa with a friend for a half hour while I had a church meeting. Seriously, Clarissa has been home for 8 months and this is the first time she's ever been away from me or Shawn! When she first came home I wouldn't leave her with anyone because we were working on her attachment and I didn't want her to think that we were leaving her and not coming back. She's pretty clingy to us and doesn't really let most people hold her, so I've just continued to arrange things so that she's always with either me or Shawn. We haven't had a single babysitter or anything in 8 months.
But it's getting to the point that I think she needs to learn to be away from me a little bit. In a few months she's going to be old enough to go into the church nursery on Sundays and at some point Shawn and I are going to want to go on a date again!
I have a wonderful, awesome, amazing friend (Hi Karen!! :)) who realized that it was time for us to start venturing out without Clarissa occasionally so yesterday when she heard that I had a meeting today she insisted on watching Clarissa. I almost didn't do it. I have serious seperation anxiety when it comes to Clarissa! My boys were so social and independent when they were little (they still are, actually) and I never worried about leaving them with friends at all. It's not that I have an issue with leaving my kids with people, especially my wonderful friend Karen, who is awesome with my kids. I just have seperation anxiety when it comes to Clarissa!
I have this whole thing about her feeling abandonded. The last time the people she thought were her parents handed her to strangers, the strangers took her out of the country and she never saw those first parents again. I had to watch her grieve over that and it was awful. So even though I know that I'm going to come back if I leave her somewhere, I have this fear that she's going to think we left her. It's totally irrational, but I can't help it. It doesn't help that she's really clingy to me and doesn't go to other people easily.
Anyway, Karen was right. It's time to start teaching Clarissa that if we leave we really are coming back. The longer we put it off the worse it's going to be. Today was a good day to try it out because my meeting was short. So I decided to be brave, I took Clarissa over there, got her settled with Karen and hurried and left before I changed my mind.
I was pretty antsy during my meeting, but I survived! A half hour later I went over to Karens and Clarissa survived too. Karen said that she cried after I left but she finally decided that it wasn't so bad and let Karen carry her around. She was pretty happy to see me when I got there though!
It was a small step, but we did it! I'm grateful for a good friend who knows what I need and won't let me chicken out. :) Slowly we'll start leaving Clarissa a little more and maybe someday we can actually get a babysitter and go on a date!
For now I'm going to go enjoy the few hours of peace and quiet I have left before the kids get home and summer vacation officially begins!