We had read books to each other, Lamb and Dog had been rescued from the basement and were in their places next to his pillow, and the new strawberry toothpaste had been a hit.
I was dreading the conversation I knew we had to have. For the next few weeks, I'd need to be at the theatre every night to see the show - and I was going to miss putting him to bed. I had a brick of guilt in my chest (and expanding into my armpits) as I anticipated his sweet little face making the realization that February was going to be a long month.
We were talking through the expectations - looking at the calendar together - and figuring out exactly when I would and would not be home at bed time. "I'm sorry," I said. "it's only for a few weeks."
And that's when he said it. "Mom, I think millions of people are gonna see your show and love it." And he gave me a hug and a bunny nose kiss.
How did this little person become so generous? How did I get so lucky?
Getting ready for Rated P to open has been wonderful and exhilarating. But - it's also been exhausting and hard for my kids. The irony of writing a show about parenthood is that it consumes more of my day than parenthood itself.
This month I have been wholly consumed with my show - all about the ins and outs of raising kids. And because of it, I missed the first graders' Valentines' Day party. I wasn't home when my toddler stuck a broom stick handle through my husband's grandfather's wicker back (amazing) antique chairs. I don't know how many fruits and vegetables my kids ate last week. I am operating under the assumption that my husband has bathed them. It's been one of those weeks.
But, I see in my son the beginning of understanding "passion." He is starting to ask questions about "following your dreams." He is coming up with dreams of his own. Yes, it's difficult that I'm not home at bedtime these days. But, I hope for him, that one day he'll miss his kids' bedtimes for a few weeks too. I hope one day, my sons find a passion and a dream that feels big enough, worthwhile enough ... to put their whole selves in it. (Maybe by then, they will have figured out how to get the grocery shopping, laundry, and dishes done simultaneously. That would be an enormous improvement in the "passion" project department).
We open in 11 days. Me and my boys ... we can do it. I've pre-recorded my lullaby on an mp3 player, I've embraced the beauty of Fresh Direct, I've decided it is ok to ask my babysitter to fold the laundry. We're working it out for 11 more days. And then my passion project will be public - and I will go home and put my kids to bed.