Charlie Bertsch (cbertsch) wrote,
Charlie Bertsch

Friday Night Right

For several years now, most Friday nights have been father-daughter time for me and Skylar. We don't always do much of anything, but that's part of the fun. She puts a lot of pressure on herself at school. And I feel that pressure myself, to an extent, in addition to the other burdens of the week, which have become more pressing since I started taking care of my mom the majority of the time. When I bring her home from school on Friday afternoon, then, we both breathe a sigh of relief.

At least, that's how we'd grown accustomed to doing things. But as last semester unraveled for Skylar in the wake of first illness, then her grandfather's death and finally a series of mishaps with the medication she was taking to stay even-keeled, our "traditional" Fridays became an endangered species. Kim understandably didn't want to go out much with her daughter doing so poorly and even when she did manage to get away, Skylar and I felt pressure trying to recreate our pressure-releasing Fridays of yore.

That's why yesterday was so important. I brought her home from school to relax, then took her out to Chef Alisah's, the Bosnian restaurant that has become our special place since we first tried it out in early 2011, and then for a hot fudge sundae at Sullivan's Creamery, the local place that managed to stay in business after Swensen's withdrew their franchise. The whole time we talked about her favorite subjects. Well, she talked, for the most part, while I listened. But it felt great to have such a normal night out.

As it turned out, things got more stressful once I returned home from getting my parents to bed. Skylar wanted me to look at dresses with her on one of her favorite clothing websites. We did that for an hour -- which was a real honor for me, I must say, being such a fashion-challenged guy -- but then she started to fade. By the time she was supposed to be getting ready for bed, she was acting really sick. Now that's not uncommon on a school night, but has pretty much never happened on a Friday night. So I knew the malady was not being exaggerated for effect.

Skylar went on to sleep very poorly, even by her slumber-phobic standards, which has me hoping that she can make up for the deficit by waking up later than usual this morning. I suspect that she will, though one never knows with that sort of thing. Regardless, though, I am grateful for having had one of our "classic" Fridays -- to invoke one of Skylar's elementary school formulations -- and hope that we can string together a bunch more before the next school year commences. Because I am well aware that once she starts driving, which could be as early as October, the likelihood of her indulging in that much family time will diminish sharply.
Tags: daughter, everyday, nostalgia

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