June 10, 2009

Long Distance Relationships

During our pre-parenting years we enjoyed the luxury of planning work trips around each other's schedules so that we were both out of town at the same time. When one of us needed to spend an extra day in the city or we wanted to attend an evening event we'd just pack an extra pair of undies and head in to Brooklyn for a night, or two, or three. And when it came to visiting family in MN we were content with booking flights whenever something cheap became available and keeping up via frequent phone conversations in the meantime.

Let's just say that the move from pre-parenting days to parenting days has introduced a whole new level of understanding of the realities behind long distance relationships. There's no point in trying to keep count of the number of times I've spent a few days on the road for work while Mike holds down the fort at home, only to swap roles the minute I return and not so much as high five each other in passing. And I've lost track of the number of times I've actually said out loud "I want my mommy". A trip to MN every now and then no longer cuts it, I long to have family nearby who would spend enough time visiting at our house to have mentioned, in advance, that I shouldn't keep Ash's toy camera upstairs so as to avoid any inconvenient snapshots while everyone is showering and getting dressed in the morning. Yeah, someone like a sister would've pointed that out to me.

This really isn't meant to be a list of complaints about why living a plane ride away from family is tough, perhaps it's just a stated admiration of anyone out there who lives within driving distance of family, a quick comment that I think you're so freaking lucky and should hug your free babysitter relative extra tight tonight. The luxury of having a grandma to step in for daycare pickup duty a night or two so that both mom and dad can be on the road on the same day, a sister around to share parenting advice and point out mommy's seventeen kajillion mistakes before she makes them, a papa excited to have a sleepover with a two year old enabling mom and dad to disappear into the night and not return until the next morning. Those sorts of things are just a few of the priceless conveniences parents can exploit be grateful for when you live near family. Now, I certainly understand that many of the above could be covered by hiring a babysitter, and we have on occasion. But there's a big difference between returning from an outing and paying for a babysitter versus returning from an outing and sitting down for coffee and desert with mom before heading home. Ok, that part might be me complaining just a little bit...

Many would suggest that we should pack up our bags and move back to MN and start enjoying regular picnics in the park together on weekends and casual morning coffee breaks together on a random Tuesday. Unfortunately we're a bit too anchored in our NY lives to dig up our roots and transplant. We love NY, and short of a relocation to Barcelona, Paris, or Tuscany I don't see us putting up a for sale sign anytime soon. The solution then? We think everyone should move to NY. BBQ at our house! Any takers? Anybody?

I have a feeling we'll be continuing (for the foreseeable future) to look on longingly while our friends drop their tots off with grandma to head off to Sunday champagne brunch run errands. Oh wait, as it turns out every single one of our friends with children are in the exact same long distance relationship with their families as we are. I guess that explains why there are always so many children at the local favorite brunch spots, which is just one of the many reasons why we could never leave NY. Dang.

And to sum it all up:
*Finding the delete button on a toy camera is NOT as easy as you would think.
*Keeping up with tradition, we WILL be attending this year's Wine Enthusiast Toast of the Town. Due to aforementioned circumstances this requires hiring an overnight sitter for Ash so that we can stay in the city and be all winey, thus adding a solid 50% to the cost of the event than in previous years. Note to self, log this one as a "+" for living near family.
*Note to self, if you lived near family you wouldn't be going to the best wine tasting event in the world in the first place, log that one as a "-".
*The horses and the goats and the chickens across the street are moving. They're outa here July 1st. Ash is going to need some serious therapy... Or we're going to have to relocate to somewhere with horses and goats and chickens.


Amanda and Co. said...

Haha-well said.

Gamma! said...

So ok...it worked...when's the next flight out and when's the BBQ starting? Ash NEEDS us! Oh, and sounds like YOU could use/need us too :) Love you and would be on the next plane out - unfortunately I'd rather enjoy the time with you without a "boot" on, so will have to put off a visit for at least another 6 weeks! Sorry :( Have a blessed day everyone!

Cloverland Farm said...

how sad you are losing your neighbors!!
yeah, we don't have any nearby grandma's either. poo.

stephanie said...

Will you please stop showing off with your prolific blogging!! You are one of the reasons I read fewer books because of such great writing right here on your blog.

Anywho, I am right there with you. Well, not for much longer though because my parent's house finally sold and they will be living in Atlanta Oct - Apr. Can you say, sleepovers?!!!!! Okay, I won't rub it in any longer but whatever you do, don't leave NY. Everyone should relocate near you. End of story.