And no, it’s not about my family….yet.
Last week, hubby and I finally had our first little breakdown over our new family life. He’d come home from work, change, take the dog out, take business calls, then take over baby care while I made dinner, then blitz out over TV or and snacks before collapsing into bed. Rinse, repeat, day after day. I’d do the usual dog/baby walk, laundry, feeding dog, feeding baby, bathing the baby, changing, playing, trying to cut his nails, blogging,arranging Buddhist meetings, occasional auditioning, phone calling, try to eat, pee, AND no, I still haven’t done my taxes, my mum’s taxes, opened the mail, called that person back, forget about chanting, I just want to find a pair of pants that fit that aren’t yoga pants….. and he came in and said the dog doesn’t get enough exercise! And I remind him that I just took the dog on a 2.5 km run/gasp/walk on the seawall with the kid. And then he says, well, that’s today, the other day you JUST walked around the lagoon and that’s not good enough. By the way, that takes at least 35 minutes at a brisk pace. This dog gets more than adequate exercise. Even on a bad day. There are millions of people in this world that don’t do as well as our dog does.
Cue smoke billowing out of my ears.
I had scored free movie passes and he elected to stay home with the kid cause he had been quite fussy around bedtime and didn’t want to inconvenience my friend who was willing to babysit. What if he started crying? What if he wouldn’t go to bed? I was already upset that he had turned down a couple of hours to get out with me. I ended up asking my friend to come with me instead. Cause make no mistake, I was going to see a movie and eat popcorn.
I told him he could take the kid AND the dog if he really wanted to help as I had just had prepare for an audition with the kid crying and whinging the whole time I was showering, dressing and attempting to put on my makeup AND get us out of the house. But then he complained he couldn’t possibly play with the dog cause the kid whined when he stepped away from the stroller to throw the ball. Seriously. So I said no, forget it, I’ll take the dog to the park, you stay home with the kid. Fine, as long as he didn’t have to hear me complain. Fine.
Then I complained. Loudly. Hey, I’ll go toss the ball with her, it’s not like I don’t do take care of her AND the baby every single day Monday to Friday. God forbid you have to do two things at once! You get the picture. I was getting a little sick of his tone. Sick of the dog’s needs being put above my own. He starts beaking back, blah, blah, blah. I stomp out with the dog and by the time I get back, I realize that he’s just as worn as I am and that he never gets time to himself either.
He gets up early with the Precious on the weekends so I can sleep in and we often have to split up to complete errands and tasks on the weekends. We’re obviously both feeling worn out and unappreciated. He’s staring at me with those eyes so I sit down and actually apologize to him. I apologized because I had not taken into consideration that sometimes he needs a break too. He loathes to ask for help (including babysitting his son) because he feels we should be able to DO EVERYTHING ourselves. I know him well enough to know that he will always do things the hard way first before learning his lesson. I also know me well enough to know that I have no intention of losing my natural mind so that’s why I insist on a dog walker when he’s out of town and the occasional house cleaner and I have every intention of getting a babysitter. I can’t wait for his mother to come to town all the time. I am willing to pay for this because my time is precious and there are other things I’d rather be doing. I would rather play with my son with my full attention rather than try and hold him while sweeping, cleaning or attending to other things. I REFUSE to drive myself over the edge to prove my worth.
In turn, he let me know that he does put me first, does his best to please me and does appreciate everything that I do. So we both talked it out and I think my point was made. Let it be known that in this part of my life, I will not be the martyr my mother was. I will also let DH know that daddies deserves a day off every now and then, too.