I woke up Saturday morning with my son stuck to my face like those pale, vagina-shaped face-suckers in Alien. After I dislodged him and rolled out of bed to take a piss, he started crying and ran in to find me. He stood on my foot and wrapped his arms around my leg while I peed.
Except for the hours of 11PM to 3AM, he spent most of the summer in the same state of panic. Last night my wife told him goodnight. He thought she said “bye.” He went apeshit.
He started kindergarten this year, which is probably the reason for the current attachment issues. But it started well before. He wouldn’t stay with my folks in Kentucky. He wants to stay at the house rather than go to the pool. He follows me around from room to room and a good portion of my time is trying to lose him, like he was an F.B.I. tail.
I’m a homebody, and have always been so. I fear change, like a set schedule, and would be perfectly happy to do the same thing every day for the rest of my life. I get the need for security. I can be and like to be alone, however, even for short periods. Taking the garbage to the curb is like a vacation. I seek out tedious or repugnant jobs around the house as a way of getting away from my family.
During Christmas I pretend I have diarrhea so I can read in the can.
But, of course, there is a different between “alone” and “lonely”, and I think I only like to be alone because I know I could be with people I love. That sounds heinous, but it’s not, I hope. I like to know that they’re around, and safe, and doing something in another room.
That doesn’t sound much better…
My son follows me everywhere. He picks the lock and talks to me while I’m pooping. Last week he “helped” me clean the toilet.
This is a blessing. My son loves me. My first two kids gave my wife and me the finger on their first day of school.
“Later, dickwads (note: when I spell-checked this post the computer wanted to change “dickwads” into “duckweeds”, which is infinitely funnier); finally a chance to roll with my homies.”
My son cried the first day, on a bench, at lunch. My wife works in the building. He is well aware that she is never more than seventy-five or eighty feet away from him. He sat, sobbing, holding his friend’s hand.
My wife walked out to talk to him. She knelt down, looked at him, and said, “Are you crying? Do big boys CRY? Are you a baby who can’t go to school and has to go to baby school with little baby-like babies?”
She’s so gentle.
He dried it up and stood, lined up when the whistle blew. And my wife watched as he walked back into the building, holding it together until he hit the door, and then she watched his face crumple and his hand pinch the bridge of his nose to try and hold the tears back.
When she told me that story I was ready to take him out of school. Why should you get your emotional ass handed to you at five years old? Boys should be with their daddies.
Maybe I need to reassess who really has the attachment issues…