Monday, January 25, 2010

I don't know how I do it

Hey there, blog. How have you been? Me? Oh, I've been a little bit busy. I'm working on a new/old endeavor. I have two kids who won't give me a moment's peace. I have a husband who travels extensively for work, leaving me with even less peace than I would normally get.

(If you're playing along at home, we would be up to 0% peace. Scratch that, .5% peace. Sometimes I lock myself in the bathroom and wait for the savages to stop beating on the door and begging for snacks/television/books/someone to wipe their butt. It's called "Self Preservation".)

My family and I, we make it through the day the best we can and some days that best is not so good. But funny enough, friends and acquaintances, upon hearing about my group blog or latest trips Mr. C has taken that require him to away from home about 75% of the time (true story - in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, my husband was gone something like 16 out of 21 days. Yeah, that month sucked.) say to me, "I don't know how you do it."

Want to know my secret, how I "do it"?

The dishes are basically done...
Except for the stack next to the sink that never seems to get smaller.

And the house is reasonably clean.
Just don't look under the couch. Or in the corners. And pay no mind to the pet hair stuck to the furniture. And for the love of Pete, DON'T LOOK BEHIND THAT CLOSED DOOR.

The kids are well taken care of...
When was the last time I gave them a bath?

and are well fed.
I always serve vegetables with their boxed mac and cheese. And sometimes they eat them.

And occasionally, after everyone is cared for, fed and put to bed...
Please sleep through the night for once, baby. Mama is begging here.

the pets are attended to and medication is dolled out...
When was the last time the dogs had a walk? And is that the cat box I smell??

emails are sent...
Only five people I forgot to email in the past week? Not bad!

toys are picked up...
thrown in a box/kicked under the couch/thrown in the trash.

phone calls are made...
Damn, when was the last time I spoke to my Nana?

and I've written something for my other blog and attended to that business...
So what if I stay up until midnight to get things done? That's why coffee was invented. WEEEE!

I get some time to relax and take care of myself.
Work out? Psssh. How about five minutes with wine and Nutella? That's, er, not too unhealthy.

But is that really any worse than how most have it? Sure, most parents I know have another spouse around to help out but that's not my life right now. Mr. C has to travel for work and that's not going to change any time soon so we make do the best we can with the time we have. We're surviving, it's not optimal but, in the immortal words of Tim Gunn, we make it work. And if that means feeling incredibly guilty for wanting to have an evening out with friends, so guilty that it leaves a slight black mark on the occasion for me, or putting off that yoga class I want to take because going means less time together as a family...

Bottom line? This time in our lives kind of sucks. Not entirely - the kids are great, Mr. C and I are happy together and at least one of us has a job that put food on our table and keeps a roof over our heads - but life is difficult right now. However, I get by knowing it won't always be like this and I am buoyed but the fact that I'm not alone. Um, right?

In the meantime, there's caffeine and chocolate. Now I only wish I could find them. Maybe they're under the dishes...

24 comments:

d e v a n said...

I hope he doesn't have to travel much more! ugh!

sam {temptingmama} said...

I really don't know how you do it. I mean you *have* to do it... but day in and day out. For weeks at a time. Bedtime really couldn't come soon enough. I would be (and have been) completely and utterly full of resentment.

I think you're awesome. That's all that matters, really. Oh, and that you have wine and chocolate. Make room, I'm coming over.

Mac and Cheese said...

So not alone.

Ladybug's Picnic said...

You do it because you have to. That's pretty much it, right? At least that's what I tell myself (and anyone else) - I do it because I have no other choice, my husband HAS to travel for his job which keeps a roof over our heads and food on the table.

Thank God for wine. And for gyms that offer babysitting because that damn child watch has saved my sanity.

SciFi Dad said...

So that's a "No" to coming over and wiping my butt then?

Ali said...

I feel you. 100%. and I could have written this post!
my husband is gone 2 weeks of every month. three kids, several jobs, a dog...

Maybe you and I should move in together. Sister wife, anyone? ;)

Mrs Mommy said...

Oh I get it. I REALLY GET IT. I have a husband in town, but he is gone long hours. So basically, I am suriving on knowing this will not last forever, just like you. Much love.

Anonymous said...
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Lisa said...

My husband has been gone since September and this is exactly - EXACTLY - how I do it.

Thanks for this post.

kgirl said...

I was also going to suggest a sister-wife, but barring that, complain to us, and let the huz think you are a saint and a gem and did I say a saint? The rewards are always good when they know we've been doing EVERYTHING.

sweet cheek's mom said...

you just summed up motherhood and parenthood! we're right there with you.

Tuesday Girl said...

You so are not alone. I just spent 6 days alone with 1 more to go home with my 3 kids.

I did this for 6 months last year & have no desire to do it again.
I don't know how I do it either.

My Baby's World said...

I was giggling while reading your post. I can relate to it. I have two little ones and my husband works so much. It just sounded like it was me.

Manic Mommy said...

Just keep your head down. No good can come from reflecting on it. And it really is temporary.

...so they tell me...

Anonymous said...

Much like it is here. Four kids 7 and under, husband gone long hours or out of town for extended periods. Always asked how I do it. I always replied because I have to, it's no big deal. But in the back of my mind I would only see what I wasn't getting done and feeling bad.
Recently a friend was talking and for some reason I finally heard all that I was doing.
It is a big deal and all of us doing it are doing a great job. Those little things don't matter if everyone is happy.

My husband likes to joke that if everyone is still alive at the end of the day, it's a good day.

kittenpie said...

Solo parenting is TOUGH.

even without that, but with working instead, I'm not doing as well as you, so give yourself that.

My house is gross - I need about a week solid off to whip it into shape, and it's not coming soon.

Still, my kids are fed and bathed and clothed, as am I, and I, too, keep reminding myself it will get easier.

Daycare will get cheaper, The Bun will grow older and able to tell us stuff, children will get more self-sufficient or be old enough to suffer the consequences when they don't do what they need to do... It does get easier, right?

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Shannon (Coupon Mommy Of 2 ... Now 3) said...

And if you are anything like me you probably do it when all is asleep and then you are up late into the night.

==========================
Come check out my blog & follow me: http://couponmommyof2.blogspot.com/

Al_Pal said...

Y'all amaze me. From my readings on ze twitter, you are SO not alone.

PS Judging by "SEX", the comment in Japanese is almost certainly spam. ;p

licorice said...

Yep. I agree wholeheartedly. Nicely put.

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

It's so hard.

Although I don't single parent, I kind of do a lot of the time since hubby works a lot, and when he's home, well...let's just say most things that need to get done DON'T get done by him.

Take it one day at a time. Cleaning can wait. That's how I see it. Take care of yourself and your family and friends, because that's what it's all about. :o)

Katherine said...

Wine, don't forget the wine after the chocolate!

Ciao Bella! said...

After reading all you wrote I still don't understand how you do it. I only have 1 girl and I'm about to lose it. My husband is always home but sometimes I have a feeling that if he traveled the house would be a little more organized and clean. Sometimes I think about having a second child but I'm just not brave enough....a least not yet!:)

Jozet at Halushki said...

"I always serve vegetables with their boxed mac and cheese. And sometimes they eat them."

This. Oh yes, this.

Although, you know, the box itself if ground into the mac and cheese is pretty nutritious, so you know, don't feel you have to go completely green.