Each Monday carries with it either happiness or despair. Every seven days my heart builds to it, dreading or hoping in equal measures. It’s the day my baby goes to my ex or comes back home to me.
Today was a reunion day, a glorious, sweet, exhaulted day filled with Golden Retriever puppies, winning lottery tickets, and back rubs by talented men.
It’s also a hard day because Peyton struggles with each transition, gnaws on the week before in that little baby heart way that children have. It’s hard there. My ex and his new wife are sharp and hard where I am soft and open. They are regimented where I go with the flow and where our needs lead us.
Of course we have broader rules which are the same (respect, responsibility, chores, etc.), but the people that we are are fundamentally at odds. He wants Pey to fall in line and adhere to his rules, I want Pey to understand the rules and learn to trust the voice inside, to find a larger reason to do things.
Our baby is still just a child; life takes practice. My ex expects a lot more than what a child that age is capable of doing. And so Mondays are moody for my angel too because I am home and I am love and I am a soft, safe place to land and the place before me was rough and rocky. I’m a place where it’s safe to let go.
And then the clock begins to tick loudly again and the joy of our reunion fades to sadness and dread because all too soon I will be without my rosy-cheeked little blond-haired, blue-eyed sidekick. Then just as quickly the week flips again and begins to sizzle, like the uncooked side of a pancake, and the week starts to build to joy from loss once again.
Up, down, again and again and again. When it’s time to have a truly empty nest I’ll have had a lot of experience with absence and loneliness, but sometimes I worry I will have a heart shaped hole in my soul because I’ll never have another joyful Monday with my baby again, it will just be a life filled with sad Mondays.
For now I will savor the feeling of this happy Monday, of my baby slumbering in the other room with the dog and the cats entwined beside me on a pile of our laundry which I will lovingly sort and fold over the course of the next few days. Until next Monday.