Tuesday, March 12, 2013
I've been feeling guilty lately. Yeah, duh, I'm a mom. MH has been super clingy lately, and my work schedule is such that I feel like I never get to see her. This morning she hugged me hard and said, "Go to work, Mama? I go to work, too?" I thought I was going to die.
Jonathan started a new job this week, which is awesome in general but has totally put a wrench in our childcare. Now, MH has to start going to daycare at 7:30 vs. 9:00. I hate that she's there for so long, but there's just nothing to be done about.
And don't even get me started about the new baby, who will have to start doing full time daycare at 3 months.
Last night, before we fell asleep, I was talking to Jonathan about this, and he said, "I just don't feel like I'm being a good dad right now. I just feel so guilty that I have to drop MH off so early and rush our mornings."
And that's when I realized: we BOTH feel guilty. Which has got to be progress, right? My dad worked all the time. He owned his own business and traveled a lot; for most of my childhood, he was gone three or four nights a week. And he never felt guilty a day in his life because he did a million times more than his dad ever did. My grandfather never changed a diaper or gave his children baths or cooked a meal--all things my dad did on the rare occasion that my mom was someplace else.
But these are all things Jonathan does on a regular basis. I go to work early so he's totally in charge of the morning routine. I work late two nights a week, so he's in charge of dinner and bath time. He does laundry and washes dishes. And I can't remember the last time I mopped or vacuumed the house--that's all him. These things don't have the self-congratulatory novelty that they did for my dad; this is just part of the daily routine of being a parent.
Moms have been feeling guilty for decades, trying to balance work and family. But it's no longer a "mom" issue; it's a parent issue. Now we all feel like we're doing a shitty job. PROGRESS.