After being cooped up in the house all week, I decided that I needed some away time last night. When he got home from work, I told J that I was going to "take a retreat" upstairs once he had eaten and had some time to decompress. After visiting with him, I headed up to our bedroom and wasn't sure if I was going to read or rest. Ultimately, I decided to read.
I enjoyed a good hour and a half of quiet time, put a little dent in my book, and was glad that I allowed myself the time to relax. I was pleased with how well things seemed to be going downstairs (no major crises from what I couldn't hear), and was happy that J was getting some good alone time with the kids (generally, there are at least two nights a week when I'm at the gym and J gets the bedtime routine all to himself). As bedtime grew closer, I debated whether or not to go downstairs and help. Ultimately, I decided to give myself the night off completely and allow J to handle bedtime.
I felt slightly guilty, as though I was shirking my parental responsibilities, but Liam and Ella are going through a phase (at least I hope it's a phase) where, if I'm around, I have to do everything. It's an unending chorus of "Mumma do it!" and it does get to be a little tiring. If I'm gone, they have no problem letting J take care of them, so I decided that it would be best to let Daddy put them to bed.
I quietly left of the bedroom shortly after J had wrangled the kids into their room with the intention of getting a jumpstart on cleaning up (usually, by the time I'm done singing to the kids and tucking them in, J's got the entire day's mess cleaned up and I wanted to surprise him). I knew that I'd have to be quiet, otherwise the kids would hear me and insist on my going in to sing to them. As I started to clean, I couldn't help but eavesdrop on J's conversation with the kids. Liam and Ella love to have J tell them about the planets and so they asked him to describe the solar system and then they talked all about their birthday (Good Lord are they ever aware that they have a birthday coming up...and it's not even for another month!) and the Imagination Movers (specifially how boring Knit Knots is) and just about everything else under the sun. It was so sweet!
As guilty as I felt about intentionally skipping the bedtime routine, it was such a joy to hear the kids and Daddy share what was important between them. It was a much needed break - and treat - for all of us.