Last night I spent my first official night away from Peatuk. Honestly, it was not as bad as I thought it would be, simply because there have been so many nights that he has spent with his baba that sppending 24 hours away from him does not feel altogether new. Still, it was a big step in this whole parenting thing that I am doing.
I took the train from Gabrovo to Varna. It’s not a small journey- about five hours. For the first time since Peatuk was born, I have enjoyed traveling. While I still like traveling with him, it is not the same as it was before him. Now days, the journey is a lot of trying to entertain and avert crisises before they happen. But yesterday… yesterday was a throw back to days gone past. I daydreamed. I thought. I watched movies. I crocheted. Train time, for me, is a bit of forced self-care- when I cannot work and cannot be stressed. Except, when I have to wrangle and care for a toddler, it cannot be any of those things. Don’t get me wrong, I love sharing new and interesting things with my son, but I have also missed this decadent “me” time.
At the train station, Peatuk cried. But I am rather certain it was because he wanted to go on the train, not because he would miss me. But by the time the train pulled out, he was waving bye-bye and ready to go on an adventure with his father. They spent the evening up the mountain, playing at a wooden playground and probably not missing me much. Throughout the evening, Nikola sent sweet photos and video clips of Peatuk playing.
Before I went to bed I had an intense pang of missing, but it passed quickly,. In the morning I realized that sometimes absense really does make the heart grow fonder. If nothing else, it reminds me not to take my son for granted and to appreciate all of the silly, awesome toddler moments that we have right now.
Today, I went to the dentist, took a liesurely walk around town, and made my way back to the train station. There, I ran into two young Americans, obviously exploring Europe together. For a moment I listened to them struggle to make sense of cyrillic and I felt a twinge of longing for younger days. Then they started comparing some celebrity’s lips in various photos and the longing passed. Now I am on the train, headed home, ready to squeeze my little lovepuff. And my big lovepuff.