How much longer?

She’s back!!!

You would think some celebrity was about to arrive at our home. I don’t know how many times on Sunday I was asked “how much longer until she gets here“? I’m fairly certain there was about three minutes in between each question and this was well before we were even notified that K1was leaving and returning home from college for winter break. The idea of her return had the Littles and the dogs running in circles with excitement. And then, she finally announces her departure to head home. And K3 tracks her sister’s entire travel all 3+ hours of it until we are finally notified by our family tracking system that she has turned into the neighborhood. The whoops of joy and glee and excitement I can only akin to the rowdiness that must be present when your team wins a Super Bowl ring. She is home. She is home. She is home.

The poor girl can barely get through the door before she’s bombarded with “will you play a game with me?” “How long will you be home?” “Will you do something with me?” “Please don’t ever leave again.” “We missed you.” As if we are suffocating her with excitement. She does so well to try to pay even attention to everyone. I can only imagine the slight emotional stress it causes her to be not only the center of attention but the one in centerstage having questions fired at them as though they are in some sort of free-for-all press conference with hyper attack puppies (still wet from their recent showers).

I normally pick K4 up from school, I park my car and walk up the hill. I walk past all the cars that are waiting calmly in line for their child at the drive-through pick up because I have absolutely no patience and cannot wait in my car so at least I’m still moving by doing the walk up pick up… for the two days that we attend school that is. Yesterday K 1 and her boyfriend offered to come with me to traipse up the hill to pick K4 up. We stood around for a few moments and then, here comes the wave of children. Those speeding on their bikes or foot racing with their friend to see you can make it to the parents the fastest. Normally K4 is leading the pack as he races with his carrot topped friend towards me and usually he throws his arms out to me. Not today sucker. He runs right past me and into his sister’s arms. She promptly sweeps him up and swings him around as though he has a long lost family member visiting from the south of Neverland. He jumps down from her and runs to her boyfriend to fist bump him… I’ve bent down for my hug, and he promptly turns around to hug her again. I have been demoted. Which is OK for the moment. I could do with a little demotion every now and then. And seeing the devotion between the two of them bring so much warmth to my heart.

Yesterday afternoon she left to go to work. No sooner did she leave than her littlest brother goes and gets his fourth generation hand me down iPod to text her when are you coming home? Now keep in mind this child never uses his iPod for anything other than to play games as he is simultaneously watching them being played on the television. But yet somehow he figures out how to text her not once, not twice, but four times in less than 15 minutes to ask how much longer until she is home?. He is still asking when I leave three hours later to go to my soccer game. And apparently continues to inquire the entire time that I am gone. Until she finally returns several hours later, only to be informed by him that she is putting him to bed despite the fact that she think she has other plans. So rather than putting him to bed, like a wonderful big sister she is, she sits down to play a boardgame – giving him the attention that he so desperately thinks he needs. Despite the fact that the world appears to revolve around him on the regular.

Unfortunately, today I am late at pick up only to be reminded that “if my sister were here she would’ve been on time”. Never mind the fact that the girl has only picked him up from school one time, that being yesterday. And now he’s already comparing me to her and telling me how much better she is than me. Gotta tell ya, I’m a little in my feelings about that one. But it’s nice to see you that I have raised children to be so close. At least when they get older, I know nobody is supposed to like each other in the middle ages because that’s just not cool or some thing… right?

So as we adjust to being a family of 6+1 again, I am relieved to see the homeostasis that returns to our home. Despite the fact that there’s more noise and more to manage and probably going to end up being more laundry and toilet paper used. Knowing how happy everyone is just to have this one special person home completes us all and makes it all worthwhile and helps me to keep my sanity.

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