Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Daddy Diaries

I haven't been a true stay-at-home dad for over a year now. Amy, my partner, has been at home on maternity leave, making my job a whole lot easier. All good things come to an end, however, and Amy returned to work yesterday. Leaving me to tend to an 11-year-old girl (a tween...EEEKS!), a 7-year-old boy (constant noise from the moment he wakes up), and an 11-month-old (a toddler, blink, she is into something).

Yesterday was easy, the older two children were gone for the day with their biological dad (I didn't mention that bit...? Oh, well, um, ya), which meant it was just myself and the baby. We had a great day, just the two of us. We spent most of the day curled up on the couch, watching vintage Sesame Street videos on YouTube. Zoey didn't cry at all, nope, not until her mother came home from work, and even then, those were tears of relief (hurray my boobies are home). Or maybe because mommy woke her up, the boobies were in need of relief as well (or so I was told).

The older two arrived home around supper time. The energy in the house changed from contented relaxation, to frustrated hyperactivity. The shift was so sudden that it hit me like an ice cream headache. My mood darkened, my blood pressure rose, I began to worry about tomorrow. How was I gonna handle 3 kids, especially if two of them are at each other's throats all day?

Later in the evening, once the older two were in bed (the baby was harder to get down, punishing us perhaps...???), I calmed down. I was able to visualize different plans of attack, depending on how things might go down. Most of these plans entailed booting the children outside, or trying to pawn them off on friends. With peace restored in the house, my anxiety ebbed. By the time I went to bed, I was sure I could survive the next day.

And survive I did. The baby was not as happy today as yesterday. She might be like her dear old dad, she might truly enjoy the calm. The older two were kept busy. Emily, the tween, had a follow tween over, and no word of a lie, they played with their dolls for almost four hours. There was some ungodly noises that came from behind their bedroom door (voodoo, witchcraft, budding hormones, what have you), but they were kept busy, I was off the Hook. Zach, the 7-year-old, he spent the morning watching cartoons and playing video games (every little boys idea of a good time), and was then picked up by his dad to go for a swim. Which made my afternoon all that much easier. Odd to be bailed out by my partner's ex... but I'll take any help that I can get.

I have been relatively lucky so far. The universe has been kind to me. I have been allowed to ease into the full-time stay-at-home dad role. I know that sometime soon, my luck will change, that the universe will conspire against me, and so will the children. There are going to be days when it is going to suck, hard. Days when I'd rather stab myself in the eye with a fork than deal with a snotty tween, or a whiny little boy, or a needy toddler. But right now, I feel like I can do this, and I can do this well. I have three wonderful children, if I remember that, even the bad days, won't seem all that hard.

Note to self: Remember to pick up a bottle of extra-strength Advil... you know, just in case.

No comments:

Post a Comment