Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Wedlock 2: Revenge of Attachment Parenting

Ugh! What a day. I feel like a teenager with a flimsy journal in his lap, ready to capture the misery of his meaningless existence with excessive profanity or crappy, rhyming poetry. I did almost nothing today and I'm completely exhausted.

Amari has been sick for almost a week now - coughing and sniffing and whining about it every step of the way, and I'm about a day behind her - coughing, sniffing, and whining, too. We had to go out of town for a memorial service for my cousin on Sunday, so Carrie took Monday off to help out with some things I needed to take care of. Today, however, she was at work until almost seven, and after a restless night of sleep, the persistence of her cold, and perhaps the emergence of yet another molar, Amari was in fine form today.

All day, I felt like Rutger Hauer in that old, '90's, sci-fi movie Wedlock where he plays a jewel thief whose incarcerated in a futuristic prison that utilize explosive-filled collars to keep their prisoners detained. If a prisoner is separated from their partner by more than 100 yards - BOOM - both collars detonate. Similarly, when I was more than about six feet from Amari today - BOOM - a loud screaming noise would go off in my head. Only it wasn't in my head, it was my daughter and it was coupled with tears dripping down what felt like a snotty, two-and-a-half foot shadow.

Not even the sacred nap time came with a break. Each time I tried to sneak away from the couch, Amari would open her eyes, seemingly to just let the back-up of tears pour down her face. It was so sad - for both of us. For a moment I envied my Ferberizing friends, cycling in their garages or enjoying an uninterrupted Sports Illustrated article, but I was hungry and I really had to pee. I felt like attachment parenting was coming back to bite me in the bladder-filled ass.

Once that moment passed, and once I let go of any hopes for a productive day, I was able to relax into Amari's neediness and just be there for her. Although I let her cry at my knees while I cut some veggies for lunch, other than that she took a permanent place on my hip for the rest of the day. I wouldn't boast if it hadn't been so challenging, but I felt like I did a good job today. I kept reminding myself that it has gotten easier and will continue to do so. The times that Amari needs me so completely will become fewer and further between, which helped me to just enjoy being so important for the day.

By seven o'clock, however, when Carrie walked in the door, I'd never been so happy to see her. Half an hour later, Amari was sound asleep.

Hopefully I'll write off happier, healthier things soon.

Sleep well, Amari, we all need it.

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