Sunday, August 2, 2009
Hoffmaster State Park
A few weeks ago, Dean took Frankie camping for the first time. We live about two miles away from a state park with a great campground, but until this summer Dean and I would rather have impaled ourselves on sharp wooden stakes than try to take Frankie camping. The chances of us getting ten minutes of straight sleep would have been virtually nil. But over the last year, she has transformed into a normal child at night, the two or three times Dean has to go in to comfort her because she has had a "bad dream" not withstanding. Still, she wakes up when it is light outside and THAT, my friends, is sweet sweet victory. I remember for the first, oh, many many months of her life I would comfort myself that things had to eventually get better because at some point we would be able to tell her "GET IN YOUR BED AND STAY THERE AND NO SCREAMING OR SO HELP ME...." I figured she would have to be three-years-old to understand those directions and by golly, I was right. During those sleepless nights, making it to three-years-old seemed as likely as me being crowned the Princess of Monaco, but here we are, fast approaching her fourth birthday and the memory of those hours I spent rocking in the fetal position, weeping hot tears of despair while Frankie screamed her bloody head off seem a distant, albeit distinctly painful, memory.
One of Dean's biggest dreams of fatherhood has been to take Frankie camping. He's been talking about it since her conception. How they were going to roast marshmallows, and eat s'mores, and drink pop, and make pancakes on the fire, and pee in containers in the tent.
I was exempt from the camping adventure because there was no way I was bringing Molly to sleep in a 6x6 canvas construction with three other people. Combine one flailing baby, one writhing toddler and one adult with chronic insomnia who needs earplugs, a fan and a constant temperature of 67 degrees to sleep and it would have been a disaster. Having Dean in the tent would be no problem. He falls asleep just like he is attending a very important board meeting, or his own funeral. His arms are carefully crossed, his mouth in a firm and pleasant line, and he never moves the whole night.
Again, I digress.
I think Molly and I got the best end of the deal because we got to visit in the evening, eat the s'mores and roast the hot dogs, go home, sleep in our own beds, and then return in the morning in time to see Frankie and Dean emerge sweaty, disheveled and reeking of smoke, while we pranced about in our fresh clothing, having not spent the night in close proximity to our own bodily waste. They had a grand old time, though. They were already planning their next trip and composing mental lists of the approximately eighteen billion items you need to bring for a one night camping adventure. Now I just need to keep having babies so my camping exemption still stands.