Peanut is back in preschool leaving me and Pumpkin three hours together on M/T/W and five whole hours on Thursdays. I’m newly inspired to accomplish all this nonsense on my to do list with only one child underfoot. It’s amazing how much I can get done, suddenly. Until I remembered that I should be inspired to pay some individual attention to my youngest.
So, last week after dropping Peanut off at his first day of school, I sat on the floor of the playroom across from Pumpkin, surrounded by toys and attempting to engage him. He, apparently, couldn’t care less. He was much more interested in rolling a ball around the floor to chase after, independent of anything I was saying or doing. Hm.
I realized in that moment how much Peanut dictates the tempo of this house. I wondered what in the world was I doing with Peanut all day long when he was this age? I questioned whether I was short changing Pumpkin.
Then we picked Peanut up from school and Pumpkin’s eyes lit up once the second car seat was filled with the exuberance that is his older brother. I saw how during afternoon play time, he eagerly wanted to play with Peanut, crawling after him, pulling up on the train table to see what was going on, searching out Peanut’s toys to experiment with, imitating him at lunch time, squealing with delight when Peanut popped into his room after nap time.
Although Pumpkin may not get the same individual mom attention that Peanut did, he doesn’t lack for actual attention. The example that Peanut sets, the silly things Peanut does to make Pumpkin laugh, the attempt Peanut makes (sometimes) to play with his little brother all give Pumpkin a level of attention and care that I couldn’t possibly provide alone.
That doesn’t mean I won’t still try to play with the roly-poly goodness of my second born, it just means I’ll relax into the moments more, not feel guilty for filling the dishwasher while Peanut’s at school and look forward to the beauty of their reunions each day during car pool.