Being a parent is one of the most rewarding jobs to do, but it’s hard work! You are ‘on call’ 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and there are times when your toileting and eating habits are pushed to the kerb as you become so busy at times, you literally forget to eat and go to the toilet! Imagine doing all of this and always being on your own!
Up until recently I had a husband who worked awesome hours and close to home. He would leave at a time in the morning where he was able to get breakfast for the kids, he would arrive home at a time in the afternoon where he was able to have a kick of the footy with Bailey and be an active participant during the witching hour and we always had our two days on the weekend where we spent time as a family and time maintaining our home! Things are quite different at the moment!
My hard working husband has a new job that is a much longer distance from home, long hours and most weeks he works on Saturdays! This has made for some big changes around our household! I now more than ever have to be super organised with everything!!! From the weekly groceries, to meal planning, my running, to after school activities, it has affected so much of how I use to do things! My husband’s new work hours sure shed some light on the reality of what a lot of people’s lives have always been like!
Prior to this, he was always around at crucial times when a second set of hands were needed, but now I’ve had to learn to cope on my own! I’m happy to say all is going well and I’m so use to it now, but I certainly crash and burn on the couch when the kids go to bed at night! The kids have been pretty resilient and are use to not having their daddy around as much as he use to be, or so I thought!
On the weekend my husband went down to Sydney to watch his beloved Bulldogs (lose) the grand final! Leading up to his departure, the kids had seen him for their usual hour each day during the week! They were satisfied with him going (as he has been several times before) but by the midmorning of the first day, Bailey started to feel the pinch of not having his dad around as much! He was watching me bake cupcakes and out of the blew he said “it’s not fair we don’t have a daddy anymore!” while my heart started to break, I put my arms around him and said “oh Bailey we do darling, you know he hasn’t gone forever!” One shattered little boy cried softly into my chest telling me how much he missed his daddy:(…tears welled in my eyes and I explained how much daddy loved us and wasn’t going anywhere!
Our life has changed (due to reasons that were out of our control) and you have to do what you have to do….a job with my husband’s new work hours, is better than no job at all! But it has made me realise how hard it must be for sole parents! I take my hat off to anyone male or female who are sole parents to their children! Not having another adult to help with feeding, changing, discipline and bounce ideas off when things don’t seem to be working. Always being the one to make the hard decisions and even just having an adult conversation at the end of the day! And as much as children are resilient, kids need a mum and a dad. I completely understand that situations happen where that isn’t possible, but from all of this, I’ve noticed more and more that a boy especially needs his dad!
So much of my life at the moment feels as though I am a single parent taking the brunt of everything….I’m the mother, cleaner, cook, decision maker, I have to think for everyone and there are times when I feel suffocated, but then one of the kids tell me they love me or plants a big kiss on my cheek and that kicks my butt back to reality to appreciate what I have! Our daddy/husband may not spend a lot of time with us at the moment, but we know he will return home each day! And it’s not as if he is out partying, I’m the lucky one who gets to see and spend so much of the day with our children while he is out there supporting his family! That I am extremely grateful for as I only have to work a couple of days a week.
I live in hope that our life will return back to what we use to have and that is having more quality time as a family! Our life at the moment is what it is and as long as we have our home and the kids are happy and healthy, there isn’t much more I could ask for….I know there is one thing I’d like though, after the year we’ve had – a two week tropical holiday!!!!!