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I Can't Compete


Date With Dad July 2007

I have some competitiveness in me. Just a little. And only when it comes to certain things. Like board games, James Bond- the video game, and wrestling matches with Aaron. (I have some serious core strength.)

Other things, I've learned are not worth trying to compete for and with. Like winning the affections of my children. And Jazz games.

I went out of town for the weekend. A "Girls Weekend Out" with a good friend from my childhood (better known as BFF) and a new friend who we are trying to talk into blogging. (You can do it, Kim, you really can!) More details on that great get-a-away later. But like our family life is every day, things got crazy, and a few days before I left, Aaron was scheduled to leave town on business the same day I got home. Luckily, we were able to meet up at the airport after I arrived, and before he departed. It went like this:

Me: Is everyone still alive?
Aaron: The kids are really funny.
Me: But are they alive?
Aaron: Of course they're alive, and they love me the most.
Me: I might believe that. But they miss me the most right now.
Aaron: I might believe that, but they still love me the most.

So after a 20 minute update over airport dinner, I drove home as fast as I legally could to get home to my kids. Because if you don't already know this about me, I have a hard time leaving them, and don't fully enjoy my time away from them... unless it's 2 hours of quality time at my local Target.

And as I excitedly walked into the house from the garage, I saw my fat baby with a bottle in his mouth... and no excitement to see me.

Maddy and Parker eyed my bags to see if I happened to bring home any "prizes" for them.

And then the little boys came... the pitter patter of little feet, and the cries of "Mommy's home!" It melted my heart. And it lasted for, like, 1.5 minutes. Hugs and kisses, and then back to playing with Light Sabers and cars.

At least I was home.

The next morning we woke up, had breakfast, and went upstairs to get them all dressed. Jack immediately began asking for "Dada". Over, and over, and over.

"He's at work!" I said, like he would even know what that meant. Next time I should say he's in China or Tunisia with Ben from Lost... maybe he would get it?

But upon hearing "he's at work" Charlie broke down in tears. Huge tears.

"I want my dad! I hate this house! I want to go to my dad's hotel!"

And it was then that I realized, they really do love him more. Even though I'm the mom. Even though I labored hours to birth them. even though I sacrificed 9 long months of discomfort to make sure their little bodies were healthy and comfortable. Even though I make them breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and occasionally indulge them with a Happy Meal. They still love him more.

Not one tear was shed while I was gone (I know because I asked), but the first morning that Aaron is away, during a time he is normally at work anyway... let me just say, I was jealous he got tears, and I didn't.

And when I asked my sister why- "Why do they love him more than they love me?", she, in her wisdom and as only Abby can get away with, said...

"It's because he doesn't yell at them like you do."

So true.

Like I said... sometimes, I just can't compete.


Craig and Jessica Smith said...

I love this little story because, all dad's are the hero! This is the case at my house too. It is also because, they just play when they are there. We still have to do all the cleaning, cooking, laundry and just maintaining the house which is not fun at all! I can't wait to hear about your fun trip! I hope you were able to enjoy some time away!

Alifinale said...

I would be jealous too - but right now I want my kid to love daddy more. Seriously, give me a break!

And Abby is only partly right - Dads aren't generally around as much as moms so they seem more special.

Alifinale said...

Oh, and dads let them eat M&M's for dinner. Hard to compete with that.

Laura and the family said...

The only reminder I can tell you is that it is only temporary to love their dad more than their mom. The young kids often think it is their "fun" weekend. We, as mothers/women, tend to think of the manners, do their homework, eating the food properly, etc.

But they will realize later in life.. we get our paid back when they get older. The best part of that is their love for us last longer!

Anonymous said...

So true - they get to be the fun parent each night when they return home from a day at the office - away from the chaos and after we have spent the entire day nagging, cleaning up after, raising our voices a few times, and wishing that we could be anywhere else but there.

Wendy said...

so sad, but soooo true!!!!

Kim said...

I just love abby's ability to be so candid

Kim said...

I just love abby's ability to be so candid

Abs said...

That's funny but that's not what I said... I said you discipline them and Aaron is more their friend. But good thing you do cause they would be outta ina troll (isn't that what Morgan used to say?) if you didn't!
LYLT Sista!

grandma jojo said...

next time they ask where dad is tell them he is in the car at primm waiting in line at the drive thru and the a/c isn't working. i don't think chars would want to be with him.
you are so funny. i love you so much. i'm so happy they love their dad. but i also know how much they love their mom. i've witnessed it.

Traci said...

When dad's watch them it is called "fun time." I come home, the house looks like it did when I left (if not worse), they are still up and usually playing video games. Who wouldn't like that better than me constantly telling them to put on pjs, brush teeth, lay out clothes, lay out snack, get to bed QUICK (in a nice yelling voice). Yeah, they secretly love you just as much if not more, but they'll never tell you. That's what I have to believe or I might just go and quit this job!

Deby said...

I'm so with you on that one! It is so frustrating being the one that feeds them, shops for them, cleans up constantly after them, totes them around, take them to the doctor... basically everything.

Then Bob comes home and the entire world revolves around him. Putting Alexis down to bed involves a whole lot of "daddy, daddy, daddy". This after being the one to quit my job to stay home with them.

Totally NOT FAIR.

kellymccaleb said...

cute story :)