Monday, June 08, 2009

Wide Open Spaces

I don't know whether it's because I grew up in small town Kansas, was raised in a big house, or just a personality thing, but I like my space. As any mother of a toddler knows, getting space is not an easy thing. Linus is a touchy-feely kind of kid and usually I love this about him. However there are just days where I could use a little space.

If Linus had his way, he would sit in my lap to play cars, be carried everywhere twirling his fingers through my hair, and even sit on my lap while I pee. He just likes contact. Which is why by the time 5 o'clock rolls around I'm dying for space. Of course, 5 o'clock is also the time when my husband is done with work and wants to reconnect with me, and the time when my cats begin to stir and desire affection.

What's a mommy to do when she's just had it with contact and needs to reconnect with herself? Aside from purchasing a bubble (ala boy in the bubble) or baby cage, a mom has to make her own space. One way I've done it is through a recent purchase of more baby gates.

I never wanted to be that mom that closed the house off from a family member's (albeit a short one's) explorations but I've found it to be the only way. I still want to be able talk to and hear Linus while he plays, but without a gate he would be on top of me. There are so many experiences, even common everyday ones, that I try to include Linus in, but some days it's just easier to make the bed without tripping over toddler toes, dodging toy dump trucks, and catching bedside water glasses. As an added bonus, the gates also provide our friendly beasts with a haven from tail pulling.

I've found that the addition of mobile baby gates has really helped my sanity and allowed me the space I need to feel closer to my family. Now when Linus and I are connecting, I don't feel the urge to keep him at arm's length and instead can plop him down on my lap to read a book or play cars. Sometimes a mom needs a little space to feel closer. Is that so wrong?


CSO said...

Not wrong at all -- in fact, if all you're doing is using baby gates, I'd say you're being very generous about your space. Lately I've started closing the door when I have to poop -- sounds crazy, but otherwise I'm never alone.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

You are being really healthy I think. We went through brief cling-on phases and the little distance kept me patient and taught them to be alone (a little).