Linking up with Kate Says Stuff for Thankful Thursday.
When you live in a relatively small house with five other people and four of the other people are age twelve and under, you can pretty much expect that peace and quiet is a rare commodity! How did that saying go? Silence is golden? The person who said that must have been a mum of many!
Sometimes the Grumpy Old Man and I retreat to our bedroom, yes, in the middle of it all, in the middle of the day with the kids all chattering away in the lounge room. We got to the bed and just soak in the meagre quietude that can be found there, at least until one of the boys realises we're both A.W.O.L. and takes it upon himself to orchestrate a search and retrieval campaign...
There are times when we can get complete silence and I'm very thankful to those times for the restorative affect it has on my ability to parent with a moderate level of sanity.
Occasionally, the Grumpy Old Man or I will "gift" each other solitude by going out with all the boys on our own and leaving the other one at home for a few hours to just sit and stare at the walls (if that's what we want to do - and it is more often than you would expect!).
I also get a chance to sit in silence most evenings when the Grumpy Old Man takes Ari to bed. I'll get the other three into bed, and then I have an hour or so of complete silence because the GOM will often drop of himself while "simulating sleep" in order to convince Ari that it's nigh-nighs time. I often sit in low light and listen to the fan on the gas heater whirling (or purring, as I like to think of it).
Recently I've discovered that the Ari lad - who is very boisterous and loud when his brothers are around - is quite the lover of solitude between the hours of nine and three! He just potters around, plays with his Duplo, reads books, watches Doctor Who or Waybaloo (because, as you know, those shows have a LOT in common; foreign lifeforms, nonsensical timelines, and spinning and floating in the sky). I often let him play around on my iPad, as well (don't tell his brothers, I'll never hear the end of it!), though this usually leads to spending part of my evening ungrouping my apps...
Today he was very quiet, and then I sensed he was just around the corner from my computer, so I tip-toed over and took a peek, and there he was lying on the floor in the doorway between the kitchen and the hallway. He was gazing up at the ceiling and singing some little tune to himself.
Every now and then he'll come up to me and we'll sit down together and have a hug and a little chat, and a sing-song (ye gads, I sound like a freaking Kleenx ad now!), and then he'll potter off again.
At about three o'clock he toddles over to me and says, "Okay then, let's go put the boys up!" (pick the boys up from school)
As I get my shoes on, he'll ask, "Hand?" which indicates that he wants to walk up to the school and he's agreeing to hold my hand all the way there. I'll lock up and we'll leave and chat on the way up to the school. It's like a dream!
As soon the boys come out of class, he becomes "with my boys" Ari and the quiet boy will disappear until nine the next morning.
For the hours between nine and three though, I am thankful for such a happy little boy who likes his own company and understands the value of silent togetherness!
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