My husband is up and out the door for work by 6:15a every morning. The good news is, he is home for dinner most nights, so we have quality family time. The not so good news is that my daughters wish he were home as much as I am, and tell me so when they wake up after he is gone. Since they are only three and a half years old, I am offered a limited trio of morning greetings:
1. Prolonged whine.
2. “I want Daddy.”
3. “When is Daddy coming home?”
Most days, I am able to patiently answer questions. (Daddy is on the train going to work. Remember his office? We went to visit and you met his friends!) Or I gently remind them that it hurts mommy’s feelings to be greeted with such disappointment. (sometimes muttering something about the fact that I could still be in bed)
These comments aren’t reserved for wake up time, it’s just the time I find the most unnecessary. That is, as much as anything a three-year-old does can seem unnecessary. We just woke up. Must we be at odds? But, Daddy’s shadow follows me throughout the day. In the middle of a playtime, as I prepare dinner, being tucked into bed on a night that he can’t make it home in time. The harsh truth. I’d rather have Daddy than you.
Surely, I know that they dish this kind of trash talk out to my husband as well. And neither sentiment is entirely true. But because I’m alone with them much more than him, I feel the backlash at a higher frequency. I was chatting with a friend about this earlier in the week and she confessed the same scenarios at her house. It only took us about 2 minutes of complaining to realize that at some point, recently, in both of our homes our daughter’s refused to want anything to do with us. Nothing. Zip. Zilch. Until it was time to wipe the poop from their behinds.
Literally screaming, “No! I want daddy!” to play with me, hold me, walk with me, sit by me. But wait…time for the least desirable moment of the day? Yep, there’s a mom for that.
Yes, I notice that my little ladies are getting bigger and starting to want mommy to help them with more private issues. Yes, they call my name (and my name only) to comfort them when bumps and bruises are felt. Yes, I’m needed for one more kiss goodnight before lights go out. I’m comforted by and cherish all of this.
But, seriously? “Wipe me!” is not a term of endearment. No matter which way you look at it. And why must I be the only one that has to look at it?