On many a given morning, since the birth of our daughter, I’m in the kitchen trying to make breakfast, simultaneously managing lunch making and both children’s immediate needs. Sometimes I’m succeeding. And sometimes I’m overwhelmed as the baby is in the high chair lets me know very loudly she’s in need of something else. Right Now. And where’s my husband? He’s upstairs “freshening up”.
The disparity lies between how much help he thinks I need and how much help I’d like to be offered. My thought this morning, as Fiona cried at me from the high chair and I hoped I hadn’t missed an ingredient in the waffle batter this time, was that he either thinks I really do have it under control or he really likes his free time much more than he thinks I like mine.
I suspect that it’s one of those “the new puppy was your idea so you get to walk him” situations. It shouldn’t affect his life’s routines. She’s cute and all but I had the big idea to go and have another baby when he was about to turn 50 so I get all the fun upkeep. He’ll be the other guy. Like a Grandpappy, because isn’t he getting his AARP card in the mail any day now anyway?
As a baby, he was so afraid of her. I think she was at the least 6 months before he would take her for a chunk of time alone. It would play out like this. He would panic then she felt his panic and then she cried at him. He got to say ‘I told you so, I can’t take the baby because I’ll break her’ and so, I never had a break. It was a long long winter.
I love that women can be so darn concerned for each other. We are the best possible codependents. Ready to chip in and ease the pressure for others because we know the suffering. Never thought I’d say it but the husband is not codependent enough. Not enough jumping to make sure I’m OK or need help or if he can take the baby for this day or that day. I have to ask. And we all know how difficult that is. Makes me feel a little like a loser to ask. Super Mom’s don’t ask for help.
So he gets to freshen up while I make breakfast with the children screaming and me feeling like I’ve got hornets angrily buzzing in my head. I’m about to re-school myself now. Welcome to Motherhood 101. My baby, my rules. Everyone either starts getting more “helpful” or Mommy’s going on strike. No more hot breakfasts. No more clean clothes. Wanna book read to you, get it done before 8 pm when Mommy’s off the clock. Hot breakfasts are now a weekend event only. Toast your own bagel pal.
Let me step in and bust myself here too by saying, remember lesson #153, what you do for your bosses, children, and husbands, they’ll expect. Creating expectations and not gently reminding everyone I’m not a super-mom earlier was my bad.
I’ll be smiling as I lighten my load and take my own chosen break from chores. I’m calling the babysitter now and booking that massage for Tuesday. Because I had forgotten the number one Mom rule; Mom is always driving. Nod and smile at them in the back seat and continue on with your planned route. As long as everyone is still alive, Mom’s allowed to be happy too.
WAFFLES? On a WEEKDAY? The kind you make from BATTER? You already are Supermom if you EVER have done this. 😉
Amanda, It’s not really a big deal to me. But it is when I have no one thinking it is, ya’ know. Thanks. And I make leftovers for days.
I agree lol
The frozen section can be your friend !
But I feel your pain, girl. Tell them all to shape up. Not fiona of course. She still gets a free ride. But the two boys… they can work.
And besides, when you ask for help and there is complaining… you get to have the fun of doing the “You know it’s hard for me to ask anyway, and then you treat me like THIS????” thing. heh heh…
I have been slowly training Joshua now, to pack dinner food up in tupperware and put away, and do his own laundry… and to learn how to make pancakes so he can take a turn on pancake sunday. He still needs help but he’s getting there…
There’s also the go ride the cape may ferry and then text and tell them you may or may not be returning thing. I got the whole house cleaned that day. That was funnnnnnnn.
men… that’s a whole other blog…. oh lord…
Ya’ know Michelle, I think I’m just a bad manager.
Joe will do anything I ask him to…but I have to ask. Doesn’t help that the kids only want mom, even at their ages. Maybe I am a bad manager, too. An enabler.
Yeah, I get there’s between the lines and they do too so they’re getting away with stuff. Sometimes you want Mom and she’s unavailable so you’ll have to make do with Dad. I always think about the fact that how we model treatment of ourselves, ie. self respect, is what they’ll learn. If I’m a doormat, so will they be. Ack. Thanks Shelly for telling me this because every detail of other stories always helps me a little with seeing mine.
bad manager, how?
If I’m truly in charge as I suspect I mostly am, than it’s my management tactics that are to blame. “You do this now” would be better management. Instead of, “Gosh golly I really wish you’d come down and support me while I…” Ptthhh. I raspberry me for even complaining but it’s still funny.
My hubby spends WAAAAY more time in the bathroom getting beautiful than I do of a morning, and he’s in his early (okay, mid) 50s too. Men!
Maybe I don’t want to know what the heck takes them all that time. I think I’d look like the wife of a rock star if I took that much time. I’d have false eyelashes applied and teeth whitened and all that good jazz. Thanks for your comment Emma.
That’s what I was thinking too! I bet they’re sitting in there with a cup of coffee and a paper and an easy boy recliner!
I have an amazing husband who’s a very hands on dad, but yet I often feel guilty when I have to ask for help. Which is so ridiculous. I think sometimes we do it to ourselves, thinking we always have to handle everything. Then again, one of my male friends mentioned on a rare night out that I must have felt lucky that I had a live-in “babysitter.” Don’t worry, I set him straight.
Thinking about you today and recently. I completely think it’s us doing it to us. Which makes it that much worse. Because we really can only be aggravated with ourselves then. Nah, they did something else surely which they deserved to be aggravated with. My “babysitter” was afraid of the baby for a year. He needed to be fired. That made me laugh.
Want to hear what you’ve been up to, about the studio you refuse yourself still?
Thanks for your visit. Means much.