Cold Comfort

Dear J-

These habits we keep, these patterns we follow: it all makes sense in a large fashion, as though the routine was all we need to make it through the day without incident. There is comfort in the familiar and it seems to become almost ritual after a point. One of the things I keep thinking is how much — really, how little — time I have to spend with the kids, and whether that makes it a better use of my time to do the things I want as it seems I grow accustomed to during the days alone or to cater to their whims. Because then, you know, they might grow accustomed to that, and expect it, and what a HORRIBLE thing that would be, right? [/s]

I … you know, in the evenings, which don’t properly belong to us anyway, we just sit down and plug into our games separately and say the pleasant things and go to bed. We’ve become plugged in and distant and that’s my fault, my fault we’re not making more of an effort to be connected with each other. It’s one thing for us, committed introverts that we are, to be spending time together apart, and another for the kids, who are learning with our every action and growing convinced it’s the right thing to do. Meanwhile the things I really should be doing — rolling over the 401(k), filling out health surveys, paperwork — go undone in favor of the quick soporific hit of online shopping or witless time-wasting game playing.

I like to think it’s never too early for resolutions, but that’s the mark of a dedicated procrastinator. We draw strength from each other and I’ll not be so convinced that I’m above the games kids play, that I don’t have better things to do than spend time with them. Let’s think about it. I see them maybe three hours a day through the week and thirteen hours each weekend day, that’s barely more than forty hours a week, two thousand hours a year, and at the end of eighteen years … it’s too early to run the cold calculation and comfort of numbers, but how about this: figgy is six and a half, and how much longer will she want my presence, or even tolerate it? Especially as I go forward with this ignore everything in favor of this stupid game strategy of child raising? Yeah, I thought so.

Mike

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