Being an unplanned stay at home Dad with a three year old, and a 17 month old is tough sledding, I don’t give a shit what anyone says.
Unless of course, you’re a single Mom.
If you’re a single Mom, or a married single mom, then you my dear can tell me to shut my pie hole and I will, happly. But if you’re not that person, you can go f-ck yourself.
Thanks for your unsolicited opinion though, tips, but please don’t tell me about how it only gets harder as they get older and that I just need to enjoy this “easy” time right now and what I am going through is really not that big of deal. You wouldn’t believe how many times I have heard this.
Just cause you had kids a few decades ago or knew someone who did, I don’t think you remember all the fine print details there sweetheart. Nor do I think you have any right to tell me how I should or shouldn’t feel about my current situation. You don’t know jack shit about my situation. I think you are suffering from early stages of Alzheimers myself.
There is nothing worse than someone dismissing your current situation and turning it around to somehow talk about themselves while somehow making you feel like your supposed to all of a sudden change your whole prospective on things based on their past war stories of their distorted past. You know, back when they used to kick their 4 and 7 year old out of the house not knowing where they were all day and just told them to get their asses home before dark. Back when it was cool to drug your kids to go to sleep at night, give babies gripe water with alcohol, or give your kids cocaine to soothe their tooth aches. No wonder kids were so easy in your day, they were all stoned! Well, times have changed Chiquita.
Since you’re the one who asked me, when I tell you I feel like a zombie that just won the championship trophy for completely ignoring almost all personal hygiene steps for the longest stretch of time, and I feel like the road to future employment is going nowhere, just acknowledge that I am feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and beat up. Just turn a blind eye and leave me for dead. I don’t have the energy for your kind of self righteous conversation. Next topic please.
If you truly, truly, care about my well being you’ll drop a bottle of Jack Daniels and a six pack of Coca-Cola on my doorstep to help me numb my pain if you care to. Send me a PM for my address. I don’t need you to tell me “oh you just wait, it gets worse”. Again, unless you’re a single mother packing triplets and recently took on a red headed step child to add to your daily chores, I don’t want to hear it. Capiche?
While I agree the problems will obviously become more expensive and complex in nature as they get older, don’t tell me it only gets worse. Right now I am just dreaming of the day when I can go to someones house with both of the little hellions for a visit and not have to spend the whole night chasing a 17 month old away from your wood burning stove, your expensive lamp, your knife on the counter, eating your new plant, tossing your family photos across the room, opening every drawer he can find, fishing in your toilet, trying to go tobogganing with his face on your open staircase, or turning your back for a split second and he is coming out of your master bedroom waving your shiny battery operated silver bullet around like it’s a shiny new vibrating spaceship for the astronauts in Lego Land.
Then again maybe I am just bitter lately. I have spent the past couple weeks feeling completely drained and helpless. My 3 year old just spent three days without eating, and was vomiting at all hours of the day and night while my 17 month old Brock ran around the house like gangbusters looking for shit to get into every chance he got. He pretty much just wanted to pull his sick sister off of the couch and drag her around by the hair to play with her.
It’s definitely one of the worst feelings in the world, not being able to help your kids when they are at the lowest of their lows, and up until now she had never been that sick. Usually this would last for not much longer than 24 hours for her, (not the case with Brock – He definitely gets “The Man Flu”) but this went on for days. As shitty as that was, I will disclose I selfishly loved all the cuddles and the quiet time that came with that. I was very happy and relieved when she got better.
Of course though, I just had to wait long enoug, and just as God planned, they switched places.
Brock was just walking around the other night doing what Brock does, and then the projectile vomit began to happen. Repeatedly. He didn’t eat much for lunch that day, and pretty much skipped supper, so we figured it was coming. And come it did. Right in the shag area rug from Costco.
Its’s the area rug I refer to as the “Black Hole” or the “Abyss”. If you have ever had one of these shag beauties, you will know that when you drop something on it, it disappears. Like, forever.
It’s like dropping your keys in a river of molten lava, just leave em’ cause man, they’re gone!
For all I know, that rug may very well be where Malaysian Flight M377 may have ended up. It’s too thick for a vacuum, and easily hides about 2 boxes of family sized Cheerio boxes and there is probably about four sippy cups lost somewhere in there.
So needless to say when chunks of peas, blueberries, yogurt, and whatever else he had been scavenging was introduced to the “Abyss”, after a bit of a failed effort to clean up the shag, it was rolled up, duct taped, and carried out of the house. I was going to try to pressure wash it outside, but then I realized that’s just stupid… I would NEVER have time for that or the space to dispose of all the shit that would reappear from it. So currently it sits outside just waiting to be taken to its new home – the county dump.
Just when Brock started to get sick, that’s when Sloane got better. Go figure, right? And it was a carbon copy of Sloane’s symptoms. Vomit, fever, no eating hardly for days, followed by laying on the couch, not moving and mostly sleeping, and me feeling helpless again, and Sloane ready to take on the world and wanting to drag her brother off the couch to take it on with her. It makes it even tougher when your little patient can’t speak to tell you how he is doing or what he needs. It really is a horrible situation. I hate it.
These kids spent just as much time this winter being sick as they did being healthy. It sucked. It sucked real bad. My wife and I both feel like we haven’t slept all winter. Hell, I even take a piss sitting down now days just because I am too tired to stand up. Nobody told me that the expression “you can sleep when your dead” was invented by parents. I thought it was invented by people who liked to party all night long. Guess I was a little off on that one.
We finally got through that, and then as I knew it would, I got the night sweats and shits so bad that I couldn’t go fifteen minutes without being on a toilet. Worst. Case. Ever. Too much information I know, I know, but I am a too much information kind of guy. I am the kind of guy you never want to put on speaker phone. True story.
While all this crap goes on (pardon the pun) it certainly makes me grateful I have a wife to tag team this stuff with at the end of the day when she gets home from work. Not everyone has that luxury. Not everyone understands how shitty this can get.
It really got me thinking about many of the single moms out there who don’t get the luxury of a “shift change” when you can hardly scrape yourself up off the floor, or the moms whose husbands are away working for very long stretches at a time who are pretty much single moms themselves without the title.
It really makes me think about how tough it must be on those single parents who don’t get a break when they are sick unless they have a great family support system at their disposal, which, not everyone has. I often feel isolated as a married stay at home dad. I can’t imagine how isolated a mom feels while her husband is away at work for weeks or months at a time, or the single mom that has nobody walking through the door to give her a break no matter how many weeks or months pass by.
Yet, you see many of these “super moms” (that’s exactly what they are) powering through it all. Getting it done, and getting it done all the time. Now that I am living it, I have so much more respect and a deeper understanding for stay at home parents now than I ever did.
Even when they are clearly at their lowest, you will still see them charging ahead with their three kids in tow – and they only have two hands – at places like the arena trying to put on their kids skates while keeping the other two within arms reach, even when you know they clearly should be home sick in bed, but they have no help so they “soldier on”.
You see them everywhere. At the grocery store, at the pharmacy, the dance practice, the parent meeting, the swim club, and the list goes on and on because their kids don’t give two shits or a rats ass that their Mom is sick and they always put their children needs far ahead of their own, even when they know they shouldn’t.
These underrated Moms don’t get nearly the credit they deserve in my opinion. When I see a Mom out in public by herself these days and her kids are in melt down mode driving her bat shit crazy grabbing everything that’s reachable down the grocery store aisle, I probably would have at one time thought “hey Chica, get control of your goddamn kids already”, but now I’m very much thinking something much more like “Good on you for just getting this far, I wouldn’t have made it across the parking lot, and I will be cheering you on as you continue to weave your way around the aisles for the next thirty minutes.”
So to all those folks that want to tell me, or other people like me, about how life is only going to get worse down the road, just save it. I don’t want to hear it, and I’m not buying what your selling. I get that you had kids the same age as mine once upon a time in a land far, far away, but I will continue to choose to believe my own story; that life is only going to get better as easier it goes with my two young grasshoppers. I will be a happy man when they can dress themselves, get their own breakfast, and wipe their own asses.
Man, who am I kidding… I will miss being needed all the time – that I know for sure.
But if you’re that single mom or that married single mom fighting in the trenches by yourself, then you can tell me I don’t know jack shit all you like, and I will keep my mouth shut, listen, and politely thank you for your lip service, and walk away with my tail between my legs.
Honestly, I don’t know how you all do it. You guys are amazing.
Much respect to you – the single mom.
Thanks again for reading. I hope you enjoyed it.
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