While I was in Texas, the rest of my family had to make do without me back home. Now that Kate is not working, she had the flexibility to step in and take over the day to day operations to keep everything running smoothly, which, I am proud to say, she did marvelously well. A normal day for me would require not only keeping the chores done and planning for and preparing meals, but also much chauffeuring of kids including getting Bekah from school to work, and getting Erin after track practice. It doesn't sound like much, but that is all happening at the end of the school day and running sometimes past five o'clock, which means any dinner must be well planned in order to be served before, say, bedtime.
Every time I called Kate to see how things were going she answered with a sweet, "Hi Mommy". Not once did she complain or grouse about all that she had to do. On the contrary, she would give me a brief rundown of her day, maybe ask where something was, and be just a calm and dear as she could be. It almost seemed, (dare I say) as if she were enjoying her domestic role. On occasion I also spoke with Erin or Isaac and they uttered not a single complaint about how things were going at home. Jim assured me more than once that Kate was serving above and beyond the call of duty.
Tuesday morning I called early to say good morning to the kids and tell Jim about my suspicion that I had Lyme, and was told that he couldn't come to the phone because he was outside hosing off a carpet that the dog had barfed on. In fact, all of the animals had been sick, meaning that approximately every floor in the house had an urgent need for cleaning.
Having woken to that scenario on a couple of occasions myself, I knew exactly what they were going through, and it wasn't pretty. Am I a bad mommy for feeling a glimmer of relief that I was out of state? When I talked to Jim and Kate later in the day it sounded as if things were under control. No panic, no complaints, just a casual wondering if we still needed the dog… which I also wonder every time I clean up after her. That feeling soon passes, as it did this time as well.
Wednesday as I was waiting for my connection at O'Hare I got a breathless call from Erin at her track meet. She had just completed her 1 mile race and placed 2nd, with a personal best time of 6:45! She was so thrilled with her accomplishment and dropped everything to call me right away- still fresh from her run. I'm so honored that she called me in the midst of her excitement. I had known that she could improve her timing and start placing in the races. She certainly had the drive and the discipline for it. Her relentless training is showing. What a blessing.
Walking into our home, finally, at ten pm, was like stepping into an oasis of peace and calm. Kate and the kids had the house immaculate, with fresh flowers in little cups and vases lining the kitchen windowsill and in the table. Clean floors, countertops, and carpet, with everything in its place, neat and tidy. A green smoothie waiting for me- as per an earlier request, and sweet hugs from my dear ones, were the perfect welcome home.
I am truly blessed.