Friday, September 07, 2007

When The Boys Are Away...

...the girls will play! Mr. Chick and Nicholas left yesterday for 5 nights in Michigan. Bad timing in terms of Nicholas having just started school (hey! at least he got to go to the first day before ditching class for the next week....), having his first soccer game AND pictures this weekend, but whatever. You see, the big Oregon vs. Michigan game is this weekend and a bunch of friends are flying out to go. It was a good excuse for Mr. Chick to check in on his grandmother, who was widowed back in January. So it's a 2-fer trip: check up with Grandma and go to the Big Game (Go Ducks!!). I miss my boys.

But perhaps not quite as much as Lauren does.

Lauren is not overly dramatic or emotional, as a rule. It's just not her. Nicholas, yes. But Lauren? No, not usually. Sure she has her moments when she gets hurt, or Nicholas teases her a bit too much, and she comes unglued. But she can generally pull it together rather quickly. So it was shocking and surprising to me to see Lauren lose it after we dropped Daddy and Nicholas off at the airport. She seemed fine as we said our good-byes and gave hugs and kisses. She was cool. I had promised her we could go play at the Ikea play area, since it's essentially right there at the airport. When I parked the car I turned around and watched in slow motion Lauren's face go from stoic to sad to completely crumbled with tears shooting out of her eyes. She was a mess, sobbing about, "I just miss them! I miss Daddy and Nicholas!" There was no making her feel better. I got out of the car and just held her right there in the parking lot. She took quite a long time to ratchet down the hysterics, which is so unusual for her. I was desperate to make her feel better, offering treats and promises of fun, but she wasn't hearing me, lost in her own misery.

Eventually she calmed down, but remained sad. She claimed she was ready for a treat so we went to the restaurant in Ikea and got a cinnamon roll to share, a chocolate milk for her and a coffee for me. That helped. The play area was already at capacity at 10:15am with a 40 min wait, so Lauren hung with me as we wandered around Ikea. Agreeing to buy her a $.49 tiny stuffed elephant toy is what ultimately got her over her sadness for the day. She named the elephant "Nicholas" and I think he's a stand-in for her beloved brother while he's gone. Whatever helps. Lauren had a sleep-over in my bed last night and we're all better today.

Which is a good thing because tonight my girls are coming over for wine and dessert! Yeah! I think there are 6 girlfriends converging at my house later tonight for some fun and rich treats. Lauren will have to go to bed shortly after they get here, but she's excited that we're "having a party!". And tomorrow, our neighbors are having a BBQ party to celebrate his 40th birthday. Lauren loves to play with their two daughters, so she's excited for that, too. Parties everywhere! And maybe a trip to the zoo on Sunday or Monday. Why not?

In the meantime, we're going to watch the football game tomorrow and scan the crowds for Daddy and Nicholas. It should be pretty easy to spot them in a crowd of 100,000, right? Right!

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