Returning Home x2

We’ve been back for about an equal amount of time that we’ve been away so this post is overdue!

Returning (to my childhood) home

I hadn’t been back for an extended period for a decade so I was looking forward to spending time with friends we don’t see when we go back and seeing family more often than when we usually do when we go back (which is significant when you realize people, like your parents especially, are a decade older!). Yet, it wasn’t long before we got into a regular routine (including baby getting sick every 2 weeks and her sleeping-in) and my ambitions to bring babe to more activities resulted in only one visit to the library story time and song program, two visits to StrongStart, a visit or two to each indoor play space (Guildford Recreation Centre (1), Brentwood (1), Coquitlam Centre (2), and Lougheed Mall (1)), and one-time visits with friends and extended family we don’t normally see on our short visits. Towards the end of the trip, I realized that in my procrastination (laziness or perception that everything is so far), I didn’t end up seeing everyone we wanted – at first, the thinking was, “Oh, we have all this time…” but then by the last week or so, it became a scramble to fit everyone we wanted to see into our schedule and we had to miss some people.  But, this real-life lesson hit home for me when it comes to our spiritual state: we often tend to put God off in our lives, thinking that there’s so much time in our lives to think about that until it’s too late.

What really struck me as being strange, is that I didn’t have a strong desire to go snowshoeing this time – which seems to reflect how I felt about snow activities growing up; it was not until I moved away and returned home that I wanted to snowboard and snowshoe (and ice skate). I’m not sure if it was because we acclimatized to the warmer weather that I didn’t really want to venture into the cold, whereas coming from cold makes the mountain weather more tolerable.

Little Bean hit many milestones while there including walking and saying “Daddy!” for the first time, and while it took some time for her to be herself again (after being intimidated by new faces and places), I was happy to see that she found friends more her age to play with, especially at church, and that her separation anxiety seemed to taper off, which meant she was okay in the church nursery – even to the point where mommy and her friend was able to get a smoothie sans toddler in tow!

Returning (to this family’s) home

Just as it took her almost a month to adapt to her surroundings while she was away, she also seemed to feel less at ease to freely roam and explore back at home when we returned, and although the first few times back at church meant she was more clingy, she’s now back to herself and seems more open to meeting new faces and spending time with people without her parents always by her side. While I do miss the daily option to go to a free program at a local school for her, a childcare program at church, the number of free indoor play spaces, and her same-age friend and her cousin, it’s good to be back  – and we can work on finding things to do here and getting to know other children here.

Upon our return, I learned a few things:

  • Buzz Lightyear somehow managed to get two hours ahead! (my side table alarm clock which seems to never be on time so I stopped resetting it every so often)
  • If you don’t want your toys and other things to be covered in dust, especially when you’re renovating, put them away or make sure they’re covered
  • And in terms of milestones, I stopped counting. Except that at 17 months, she willfully disobeyed, which when it happened, I thought hashtag #originalsin and it became another spiritual lesson: we teach our children to do many things, but we don’t need to teach them to give you a look that says they’re going to test the boundaries and then go about doing what you instructed them not to do, just as God often tells us things for our own good but we don’t listen and do the complete opposite.

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