So I’ve been sort of out of (blog) commission for the past few weeks because we’ve been in the process of moving. And while we are firmly ensconced in our new home, it is still a mess of boxes, paint fumes and randomness.
I won’t beat around the bush – it’s been tough.
It’s been tough on my husband, who despite his slim physique and sharp mind has found himself thrust into the role of household muscle.
It’s been tough on me, for the very obvious reasons of running a household and holding down a job while still being unable to find anyone’s underwear.
It’s been tough on my 4-year-old daughter, who had been forced to repeatedly wear the same damp swim suit to camp day after day because of our lack of washer and dryer (thankfully, that problem has since been solved!).
It’s even been tough on our old dog, who’s been taunted by the neighborhood toads slapping their wet selves against our doors when the sun goes down and the rain kicks in.
But mostly it’s been tough on my 7-year-old son, simply because it’s been a big change in his otherwise stable life. If you’ve read this blog before, you know he’s not keen on change.
The day we moved, while I cleaned out the refrigerator of our old house and my daughter took one last dip in the pool, my son cocooned himself in a blanket and laid on the floor of his empty bedroom – catatonic in his stillness. He later announced he didn’t know what was wrong with him, right before he burst into tears.
A tight hug from mom and an afternoon play date seemed to snap him out of it for the moment. But I’ve seen the gloom hang over him for days now. He has his happy moments, his goofy moments, his annoying moments, but it’s as if the sun inside him needs a good polishing.
I understand where he’s coming from. Even though we’ve stayed in the same neighborhood and he won’t be switching schools, his life isn’t as comfortable, cozy and predictable as it was just a few weeks ago. Mommy’s distracted, Daddy’s exhausted and no one seems to have an ounce of spare patience.
I also know in a few more weeks, he’ll been fine. He’ll have his neighborhood buds, his favorite fort-building corners, his Legos strewn across his bedroom floor.
But the thing is, he’s only 7. He doesn’t know that. At least not yet. So I’m hoping that when he faces future change, transition and adversity, he’ll look back on this summer as a kind of internal object lesson. He’ll remember how scared he felt inside, and how well he coped in the end. And he’ll know that know matter what happens, he’ll be OK – with or without clean underwear.