Weekends are busy around our house. Both KJ and Sweet Pea take gymnastic classes and KJ attends some sort of hockey lesson most Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Split between two parents, this should be a do-able schedule. But the classes aren't really splitable - Sweet Pea's gymnastics class is a parent-tot class, and each and every one of KJ's hockey lessons has some parental component. And since Husband can't skate, that means I have to be at and participate in each and every one of these lessons. Normally, this isn't a problem. I like spending time with the kids and I consider the parent-tot classes an opportunity to have some special one-on-one time with each kid. Soon enough they won't want anything to do with me, so I try to treasure these times. But it makes my weekend busy. I pretty much rush from place to place, squeezing in grocery shopping and laundry between classes.
This last weekend was particularly difficult. On top of all of the regular classes and errands that fill up our weekends, I also needed to work. I tried to do as much work as possible while the kids were sleeping, but that meant I worked until the wee hours of both Friday and Saturday mornings. By the time the kids woke up on Saturday morning, I had only a couple hours of sleep over the course of a few days. I muscled through, going to the kids' gymnastics lessons and buying a week's worth of groceries "on the way" home. We then rushed around, Husband helping the kids eat lunch while I put away the groceries and collected KJ's hockey gear, all while constantly reminding KJ to focus on eating because we were leaving in ten minutes whether he was ready or not. And then, in the midst of all this madness, the phone rings. It was my dad.
Initially, I was irritated. My dad knew that KJ had hockey in 10 minutes, and he knew that we were always rushed for time between gymnastics and hockey. We usually have just over an hour between the two classes. When you try to squeeze errands and lunch for two toddlers into an hour, there isn't much time for anything else. But I'm so glad I answered the phone. My dad was calling to see if he could take KJ to hockey.
My dad's offer was exactly what I needed on Saturday. He didn't know anything about the week I had or how much I had been working. He didn't know that I was feeling overwhelmed with everything I had to do that day. My dad just knew that he had a free hour and if he took KJ to hockey, then he could have some special one-on-one time with his grandson. But for me, my dad's offer meant an hour break. One whole hour I could have to myself. So, I took him up on it.
I won't lie and say that I didn't feel guilty as my dad and KJ walked to the van to go to their lesson. I felt like I should have been the one going with KJ, that I was somehow letting him down. But as they walked to the van, I heard KJ say, "Papa, I missed you yesterday." And with that I knew that everything was fine. I wasn't being selfish by taking a nap instead of going to hockey, I was allowing for a special bonding moment between grandfather and grandson. It was one of those rare opportunities where what everyone wanted/needed lined up. KJ and Papa got their special time together and I got a nap. There's no reason to feel guilty about that.