This is an honest post – I haven’t really posted one of those about life and when things get a bit tough. I thought it was time to get honest because this is where we are at at the moment and I think it’s worth sharing. My husband has a job that takes him away during the summer for days at a time, often without much notice, so my son and I are at home living life together on our own. We get into a good routine and I mostly manage pretty well without my husband. We miss him when he’s not here, and my son is starting to look for him at night and in the morning’s – he’s still too young to understand where Daddy is. We love having him home again, but I can find that it interrupts the routine that my little man and I fall into. My poor husband can feel a bit redundant (which he’s not) and like he gets in the way (well, he kinda does but only because we’ve got this routine thing down pat!). It’s been a bit of a struggle for us as we have stumbled and weaved our way through the life that we have for 6 months of the year where he is away a lot, with the other 6 months of the year where he is around all the time. I don’t think that it’s harder for either one of us, our experiences of this life situation are just very different. My husband misses out on spending time with our son, and I am just plain exhausted!! When my husband is away, I get to the end of the day, after I’ve put my little man to bed and I’ve made and eaten my dinner (cooking for 1 can be a bit of a pain, but I have forced myself to continue making dinner and keeping as healthy as I can), I just collapse on the couch! I don’t think that I even really take in what’s on the TV – I just see the flicker of the image and some words, but my brain has knocked off for the day and couldn’t possibly take in anything more!
When my husband is home, he is normally home in time to bath our son, which gives me half an hour to get our dinner organised and pop washing and ‘stuff’ away. It’s only half an hour but I must manage to get heaps done, because in my husbands absence the house looks like a bomb has hit it and the recovery team haven’t been in to clean up, ever! Washing piles up and the kitchen table…well, what kitchen table?! If I didn’t have photos of my table I wouldn’t believe that I actually had one – I can’t see it for all the ‘stuff’ on it and around the base of it! I am very lucky that my husband doesn’t return from these trips away and ask me what on earth I’ve been doing whilst he’s been gone!! He probably wonders it, but he’s smart enough to know not to ask! I appreciate everything my husband does to enable me to be a mostly stay at home mum. Things get tight, as all families like ours would know, but I am loving being able to watch our son grow up, but am also blessed to have family support that enables me to return to work one day a week (along with a work environment that also supports that). So for now we will continue to fumble our way through routines that run smoothly and get interrupted, a house that looks very, very lived in, and I’ll still spend my days wondering “What kitchen table?!”
FYI – my kitchen table when my house is under control and my husband is home! It was a very tired St Vinnie’s purchased table that I re-did last summer. I am very happy with how it turned out (although a lot of thanks goes to my mum who is handy with an electric sander!!!)
Does anyone else find themselves in similar situations to this?! Do you have strategies to help manage the chaos in your home? I’d love to hear from you!