When I was immersed in that blurry first year of parenting I remember reading all about the dreaded separation anxiety stage, where you baby suddenly begins to understand you are not one entity and that the two of you can actually co exist (even if it is much to their howling disgust).
But not once did I ever read about this notion rearing its ugly head when you child is 3… My son however, is proof it can – because every time I dared leave his line of eyesight it was met with tears and tantrums of disapproval that I’m sure the Husband heard from Melbourne.
Perhaps my Preschooler is just lonely; I’ll grant him that. He does enjoy playing with other children and is usually counted on to be quite sociable. But shouldn't children also enjoy a sense of solitude?
Of course, his requirements for my exclusive attentions occurred at the exact same that I was trying to squeeze in a bit of extra work from home, meaning I needed to concentrate. We had some brief success when I told him to amuse himself while I worked; that was until I realised it was too quiet. Upon investigation I found a maze of green garden string unravelled throughout the house. (And I am still looking for voluteers to re-ravel it, if there are any takers...)
Careful what you wish for, right?
Even trying to perform even the most mundane tasks, like attempting to tidy my messier than a war zone house was suddenly impossible. He literally had to be peeled off my leg while I tried to push the broom to sweep. And don’t get me started on how many times I started to write a blog, only to be stopped every sentence by an insistent little person who demanded my undivided attention be directed solely at him. 100% of the time. Without break. Yes, even when going to the toilet (and heck I thought those days were long gone…)
Even at nighttime, his desire for company still lingers “But Mummy you will make me so happy if you lay here with me for one little minute” he’ll beg sleepily. It tugs at my heart, it truly does. But when your every move the last 36 hours has been with him super glued to your side, you crave, you DESERVE one minute of peace. Hell, I even locked myself in the bathroom at one stage for 5 minutes just to remind myself to bbrreeaathe…
So yes, the obvious issue is that the little man is just lonely. And in lieu of having a brother or sister to play with that mantle has been handed to me. Which would be fine, if I didn't have a million other commitments to get done during the day.
And before anyone glibly responds with the simple solution that we give him a sibling, I'll remind you that is easier said than done.
Now is the time to speak (or forever hold your peace) and impart words of wisdom that will see my son happily ensconced in his own company once more...