Monday, January 3, 2011

When your non-stay at home spouse is on vacation

This photo is a cartoon, that's why they look so content... this was NOT what we looked like in my house this past week.

We have been looking forward to the past 11.5 days for what feels like forever. Time to hang out and enjoy time at home, just the 3 of us - get some stuff organized and re-arrange some things in order to get better prepared for baby number 2 and just have a generally kick ass time.

The reality was that all being home at the same time, for so many days wasn't nearly as blissful as we had hoped.

Katie has been sick for about a month now on and off with different symptoms and has been a little cranky here and there which never helps us when we're all together. She is also going through a phase where she ONLY wants my husband to do stuff with her. We realize it's because the novelty of having him home is super fresh in her mind, but it doesn't help the sting when she decides she doesn't want me to even be in the same room as them.

So, our wonderful, relaxing, vacation went more like this. Dave had to play with Katie all day, every day while I went about my business cooking, cleaning, organizing and generally running the household as usual - only with my husband at home with me being cranky and bitter and bitchy the whole time because I felt left out and tired and cabin feverish.

I tried to explain it to him like this.... it would be like if I went to his job with him and tried to do stuff for him, differently than he did it, or tried to help out and generally just kinda was there like a shadow. Don't get me wrong, my husband is the finest specimen of a husband/dad out there - he cooks, cleans, runs errands, everything and anything I could ever hope for... but for some reason, having him home for so many days... still made things stressful and not restful like we had hoped.

I think it's because the house is all I have now. It's my full time job. So, I have ways that I do things and because it's all I do all the time, having an audience or observers makes me uncomfortable doing simple things like cleaning, cooking, etc... Especially since I'm SUPER pregnant and not feeling that well - so when Dave wants me to settle down and slow down - he doesn't understand that this is how it is for me every day.

Stay at home moms work at a different pace than most other jobs and having a Type A personality doesn't help when your husband is trying to take some of the burden for you. I know I'm lucky and I know he did his best to not get in the way - but I have been hearing from a lot of you out there similar posts about being excited to get your house back to normal - meaning no daddy during the day. It's a horrible thing and I need to work on it because my husband is AMAZING and it's not fair that I was so stressed out just because he was home. So... how do you make it work when your husband is home so that no one feels like they are in the way? How do you make sure that you make the best of the time and find ways to make the kids adjust to having mommy and daddy home for a few days?

This is what I must have looked like after being stuck in the house for so many days, with a sick kid, having Braxton Hicks contractions, and various pregnancy related aches and pains and trying to entertain for the holidays during a Blizzard. It's like you planned on doing so many things and at the end of the week nothing has been accomplished, the kid is still cranky, I was cranky and poor Dave was probably dreaming of going back to his peaceful office.
I'm not proud of it but I'm being brutally honest.

Here's to making it work in the future and making sure we NEVER have a miserable stay at home vacation EVER again. Shame on me for not finding a way to make it better before the end. I'm hoping it's my pregnancy crazies and not that I'm just turning into a bitchy Type A stay at home mom who mistreats her husband and is bitter all the time.
Please.... save me and my family from that!


  1. Lol! This is hilarious and I'm sorry, but it made me laugh!! It will get better soon! Hope fully!

  2. I hear you on all points. It is hard going from doing things your way to having even your husband (trying to help you out) take over some tasks. Especially if he does things even slightly different. I've been on bedrest and Mike has been the most amazing husband ever - but that didn't stop me from feeling a little irritated when I'd go get a towel out of the linen closet and find they were folded differently than I fold them (because I fold to maximize space of course). and it's hard because you know they are trying to just be good husbands and take care of you since they are home. I've figured it is easier to let the little things go and just be appreciative of the help. and if it's major (like geez I realized Mike was putting Jake to bed with his blankets in the wrong order! how could he?! of course Jake wasn't falling right asleep! lol) then I bring it up as nicely as possible. I'm sure Dave understands that even sitting some stuff out isn't easy to do when you are used to taking care of everything.

  3. Great post! I actually was wondering if you had any insight/tips for someone who'll be home with their kids for a few weeks. I have about a month at home before I go back to work (from maternity) and I really want to make it productive and fun for all of us. I'm just scared that I have this high expectation of how it is going to be and then it will go horribly wrong. I would imagine getting into a routine (wake-up time, eating time, etc) would be first and foremost (which we're on but with the newborn it can get a little hard). Do you suggest one outside the house activity a day? Every two days? Splitting the day up like school? Anything you got I'll take!!! Hope you are well and if you take a trip up to visit Deb please let me know (I will assume not anytime soon though :))