My kids are at such a good age. They love their independence, so I don’t have to feel like I always have to do a song and dance to keep them entertained. Jazz hands are only saved for special occasions.
Thankfully my kids have always been self sufficient like that. They FIND something to do and are happy.
My mother is always completely exhausted after having any grandkids stay with her for a night or two. And not because she is old or anything… because she is young and gorgeous!!!
But she is exhausted because she feels like she is supposed to always entertain the kids. She is constantly in their presence – playing games, taking them to the pool, going to the Dollar Store, watching kids shows, sitting with them while they play in a big bubble bath, and staying with them until they fall asleep. It makes me exhausted just to think about!!!
It’s the RAZZLE DAZZLE… like in the musical Chicago. She assumes they may get bored, which will make them sad, which will make them miss their mom and dad. So she razzle dazzles them into being happy.
I thought that was one of the benefits of having older children???? NO MORE RAZZLE DAZZLE!
Just like everything in life though, times change. People grow up. Relationships begin and relationships end. Divorce. Remarriage. Life. Death. New Babies in homes with older children. Why do you think third and fourth children tend to be more independent and self-sufficient than those earlier in the birth line? It’s because the parents are tired of doing the song and dance, so they just DON’T.
So now here I sit in a completely unexpected position. I am remarried and my kids are very self-sufficient, but my stepkids, who have been with us for two weeks straight due to track out, left yesterday to spend two weeks with their mom. Rather than the kids needing me to give them a song and dance, it’s someone completely unexpected who needs the RAZZLE DAZZLE……………………………….
I don’t think Joe has ever gone two weeks without his kids… ever. It’s going to be a tough two weeks for that sweet man.
Joe’s love for his kids was clear from the moment we went on our first lunch “non-date” at Piper’s Tavern in early Spring 2012. He made sure that I understood his deep love for his children and how heartbreaking it was for him to not be with them half of the time. I can’t tell you how many times over the past year and a half I have heard him say, “I have NEVER been a 50 percent dad.”
And that is SO TRUE. Since I reconnected with Joe I have continuously been impressed with the man that he is. We waited about six months to introduce the kids to my kids and me. They didn’t even know about me during that time because he spent his custodial time completely focused on his kids and I respected that. That was tough on us because he has 50% custody. He wanted to make sure they were emotionally ready before he introduced us into his nest. That in and of itself is something you rarely see. Most people are quick to jump feet first into a relationship and have all but moved in together in a month. His priority was the kids.
Since his divorce, his main concern has been to keep daily contact with his kids even during the time when they are with their mom. I hope and pray all will go smoothly. And even though we won’t have my stepkids for two weeks, we will still go to cross country meets and soccer games and do everything we can to continue to support them and shower them with love even though they are not with us. But I know that I am going to need to do a lot of work to keep Joe’s mind off of the length of time away from the kids. It’s going to be a struggle for him because he loves them so much, but hopefully they will have a wonderful time and we will be back to our normal schedule before we know it!
Until then I will do my RAZZLE DAZZLE and distract him from thinking about it. The old bait and switch… I will do the same things to refocus him and distract him that I would do when the kids would get upset about something when they were little.
I will flash a shiny object and get him to, even for just a moment, forget about that apparent hole in his heart while they are not with us.
WISH ME LUCK!!!!!!