The CHERISHED Life of Heather Leigh

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Daddy Day Care

My kids go to a wonderful in-home day care (Nee Nee's) where they are treated like family. Nee's Nee's husband, Mr. Jeff, is a teacher and has his summers "off". So, during the summer, Mr. Jeff is at home most of the time while my kids are at the in-home daycare. Yesterday, Mr. Jeff took his son, Mitchell (who is my son, Liam's, best friend and simultaneously his arch rival), up to the local elementary school to practice sports and then they stopped at Frosty Boy on their way back home. What Fun! Liam told me about this excursion not in a jealous manner, but in a factual manner, although I have to wonder if Liam felt left out.

Anyway, later that evening, Liam says to me, "Mom, can dad stay at home?" Puzzled, I ask him, "What do you mean 'stay at home'? Do you mean can he 'work from home'?" - which is what I do when I'm not traveling. "No," he says, "Quit work and stay at home and do daycare." The first obvious question is, "Did you watch that movie, 'Daddy Daycare', at Nee Nee's today?" He shakes his head, "No..." So, he wants dad to stay home and not me? "So, you want dad to stay home and do daycare and not mommy?" Looking hopeful he replies, "Yeah!" To which I reply, "No, silly, dad can't stay home and do daycare." Deflated, he asks (or whines, whichever you want to call it) "Whhhyyyy?" DUH "Because then we wouldn't make enough money to pay the bills to live in this awesome new house." Honest answer, although not the only one, like because Dad can barely tolerate his own brood for a solid 10 hour stretch let alone someone else's snot-nosed kids. (OK, "barely tolerate" is a bit of an exaggeration, but you get my point). So, this honest answer somewhat satifies Liam, and the conversation ends.

So, now I am faced with the question of WHY? Why does Liam want dad to stay home with them and not me? (Not that either one of us is able to or wants to stay at home…especially not if we have to do a daycare to make ends meet!) Is it because Liam watched Mitchell run off with Mr. Jeff and do those fun daddy-son things? Is it because Kevin and Liam could (and sometimes do) fish together endlessly? (Although Liam's endless questions and incessant talking during their fishing 'trips' makes Kevin wish he could fish alone.) Is it because I was such a crab the other day, displacing my anger on the kids?

Whatever the reason, I'm not offended by it. I know Liam loves me (he IS a momma's boy after all). I know I'm a good mom. But, more importantly, I know that Kevin is a good dad, a fact for which I am eternally grateful every day. So, even if my ego is slightly bruised, it warms my heart to know that Liam longs for a Daddy Daycare.

7 comments:

Sandy said...

Oh Heather, this is so sweet! This will make Liam just enjoy those moments with Daddy so much more :)

Becky Woods said...

Kids can really get you can't they. It never fails that after I have been with them all week and done tons of fun things, the thing they rememeber is wrestling on the floor with my hubby. It's good that they love daddy too.

Anonymous said...

I bet it was the thought that they would fish and play sports all day that made him say Daddy!!

Great post !! ~A

Mindy said...

I think that Kevin is a great dad, and that it's normal for boys to want to spend more time with their fathers. At least you have a daughter...

Tricia said...

How old is Liam?? I know my DS is having a really hard time with DH being gone, even though he sees his real dad often. He and my DH have a bond which is so amazing, especially since they are not "blood" related. He could be at an age where seeing his friend with his dad just makes me wish for more time with his own. Maybe your DH can set aside some time on his day off to spend only with Liam??!!?

Kids really do know how to get to the heart though, don't they?

Heather Leigh said...

Liam is almost 6. He and my husband Kevin do a LOT of things together by themselves. Most often, they go out fishing together, and they have gone to a couple of Tigers' games together where it's just the two of them. I think he just would like to have daddy home ALL the time so they could do that kind of stuff day in and day out.

Heidi said...

That unappreciative little sh*t. Little does he know he has a higher possibility of drowning, will be dirtier, probably won't eat very healthy, may be dared to eat a bug by his friend to which his Dad says he can't wuss out, will dissect a frog by the age of eight (on your kitchen table), may be lost for several hours, unbeknownst to Dad, in an attempt to find more wood for his fort, and, most importantly, his clothes will NEVER match. In all seriousness, I bet that made Kev's day!!! Oh, and I'm totally joking about all the above! Love ya!