Sunday, February 19, 2012

Flying Solo

Jacob can be a pretty good solo player.  When it's just the two of us, often he'll wander off and get engrossed in something.  He'll set up his baseball guys, army guys, or superheroes.  He'll change clothes into whatever outfit he deems appropriate for the sport he wants to play next.  He'll wander down to the basement and play with the massive spread of Legos.  He'll ask me questions and look for my approval on things, but I can get quite productive in the meantime.  It's a pretty nice gig, to be honest.  I know how lucky I am.

He seems perfectly content most of the time, but I do try to participate once in a while--play sports, help build something, give my opinion.  I probably should do it more, but it's hard when I need to get things done and don't have any backup.  But again, he's usually so good about it that it's (too) easy to just let him be.   

The odd thing is that when Craig is home, Jacob is the neediest child.  He constantly needs a playmate.  Craig will play with him for a while and take a little break, and Jacob will then whine about needing someone to play with.  I will offer myself up, but he will reject me and immediately ask who he can play with.  Of course he wants me to say "Daddy".  It would be comical if it wasn't so frustrating.

On one had, I feel for him.  He misses his daddy.  Craig does work a lot (though not as much as if he was still working hockey), but I know Jacob craves time with him.  After all, he's the coolest dad ever.  He works for the Knighthawks, knows how to play sports, introduced him to Legos, knows everything about superheroes, and is willing to be totally silly with him.  Heck, Craig sacrificed sleep Friday night to have a little slumber party with him in the spare room.  He's a cool dad, no doubt.  Of course Jacob wants to maximize his time with him. 

On the other hand, why won't he play with me when Craig is around?  Is he just so used to not playing with me?  Is he not wanting to use valuable time that could be spent with Daddy playing with me?  Hard to tell.  I feel bad that he's not that into me.  I know he loves me, but it's still a bit of a bummer to not be an acceptable option for your own kid.  I feel bad that Craig has to be full-time entertainer when he's home.  I guess he needs to make up for lost time--and let's face it, he likes Legos a lot--but it's hard.  I wish he could benefit from the good solo playtime as well. 

In the meantime, here's the Legos that have been keeping him busy lately:
There's a firehouse, a busy street corner, the remains of a castle, and a Mummy's tomb (just what every city needs).  It's a mix of Craig's old Legos, Craig's newer Legos (he got some Indiana Jones ones a few years back in preparation for a time such as now), and Jacob's new Legos, including a small cops & robbers set he got for Valentine's Day.

I asked him to show me what he made and smile.  Close, I guess.
Anyway, I have the day off tomorrow but I'm still sending Jacob to daycare.  Call me a bad mom, but I'm ready for a "me day".  It might be a different situation if we weren't taking Jacob to Toronto on Friday.  I figure there's no reason for him to miss two days this week, and I will cram as much into tomorrow as possible.  Hopefully carpet cleaning, shopping, and a visit to the gym...so it's better to do it alone than block Jacob from part of the house, drag him shopping, and drag him to the gym (though if I run out of time, that last one might happen anyway.  He's ok with the gym kids' club, though).  A good mental health day always makes me a better mom anyway, so I think it's worth it.  Any special thing we would have done if I did keep him home (Strong Museum, germy bounce house places) will be jammed all week anyway (February break), so there's no sense...particularly since we're paying for daycare anyway.  So, I'm looking forward to Friday and hopefully some good photo ops.  Busy week ahead regardless...

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