perspective.Thanks to an over abundance of hormones and many sleepless nights, I fought with Nick a lot when Logan was first born. I felt as if he had no idea how difficult each day at home was... I thought there was no way he could understand how frustrating and exhausting it was to entertain a baby all day and keep a house even remotely clean. I think this is a common issue among new parents. In fact, I even read a book about it ( Babyproofing Your Marriage- I highly recommend it!). The working parent is usually envious of the relaxing, carefree life they imagine the one staying at home to have, while the stay-at-home parent dreams of adult interactions, and time alone and away from the house. Even when both parents work (as was our former situation), one parent usually feels like they are doing more of the work of maintaining the house and raising the baby.
Well, guess what? I have had many days of living in Nick's shoes as the full-time working parent, and I don't like it. I think back to all of the nagging I did for so long... he didn't do enough of the work around the house, he didn't play with Logan long enough before or after work, he didn't rush home fast enough to relieve me of the parenting duties... the list goes on and on. Now that I'm the working parent, and Nick is the stay-at-home Dad? I couldn't regret my complaints more. Yes, it is nice to be away from the house and only be responsible for myself. But my heart feels like it is ripped from my chest every night I have to leave Logan. I hate not having more time to spend holding him, or singing silly little songs, or taking walks around the lake. And any little bit of energy I have after a long 12-hour shift is spent soaking in every bit of my little man, not caring if the dishes are done or things are picked up around the house.
Every marriage would benefit from even one day of living in each other's shoes. From my own experience, the grass isn't always greener. I will say, though, that I haven't at all missed the responsibility of scrubbing the shower each week. I haven't cried over handing over the grocery shopping duties. And I definitely appreciate my uninterrupted showers, afternoon naps between shifts, and never reaching a level of frustration with Logan because I am so grateful for each moment I get to spend with him.
What's even worse about our situation is that Nick has truly embraced his new role, and is much better at it than I was! I constantly complained about never having enough time to clean or cook because Logan was so much work, but our house has remained spotless since Nick took over. He never complains about anything, and even finds time to repaint our entire downstairs or install a new brick patio for the grill. (Have I mentioned that since he took over our finances for the first time in 10 years, he has developed a plan to have us free of our credit card debt in 3.5 years? Apparently he's better at that, too.) He's pretty much amazing. While I hate that I'm no longer #1 in Logan's life, it melts my heart to see the love he has for his Daddy. It is such a relief to know that although I'm away from him 50+ hours each week, he is able to be with one of his parents 24/7.
This transition has been difficult, to say the least, but I am learning to let go and be thankful for all of the blessings in our lives.