My mom flew out to California to stay with Silas and Eden (and Ben) for 4 nights while I was in Florida. Then she flew alone to Washington with them to stay there for a couple of days before I met them.
The three days they were at our house, it poured -- the kind of rain we never have in southern California (and the kind of indoor entrapment that Silas and Eden are strangers to). And yet, Silas and Eden (and even my mom) were as happy as clams. There were *no* meltdowns, no tantrums, and hardly any tears at all.
My mom and I have talked about this a bit -- how were those 3 days so magical and smooth? (No one even missed me, which perhaps was the greatest gift of all). After thinking about it, my mom realized that during her stay, they hardly left the house, she didn't have "life" to keep up with, she didn't have to talk on the phone, write emails, do errands etc.-- she was completely present.
And then I came back. Almost instantly, my attention was divided -- loving their little britches off and playing catch up from a week away. But that's the way it goes, isn't it? We are divided. We do have to call people back and maintain relationships. We have to take the recycling, buy paper towels and food, drop off prescriptions, go to the doctor, return emails, read at least a tiny bit of news, collect ourselves, drag the kids places they don't want to go, cook things -- (and that doesn't include doing anything for ourselves).
So as I get ready to head back home (I am still in DC), I wonder how I can be both present to Eden and Silas in meaningful ways and also maintain life. How do I use time well, carve out space for both? Because I find when I'm not purposeful, those two slur together, and I seem to do neither well...