Thursday, July 06, 2006

the daily grind

I wish there was an honest, informative, and truthfull, Housewife Handbook, but there isn't. Why? Because, quite frankly, there are too many variables: How many kids you have, what your income level is, the amount of support you get from family and friends, your kids' ages and the spacing between them, you get the idea. Some things I knew in advance about being a housewife/stay at home mom- I would be the Primary Care Giver-thet being I would be the one to first respond to me kids daily needs, generally even if Hubby is home, as they are used to coming to me for things. I would be responsible for the majority of the cooking and cleaning- In all the jobs hubby has had while we have been together, he averages 50 hours a week, so the cooking is pretty obvious, I do the daily pick-up, and he does his share on the weekends. When he wasn't working, and when I was pregnant, this didn't work so well, but now we are getting back into the swing of things. I love to cook, I do not like to clean, but oh well. I was failry certain that I would crave adult interaction the way some woman crave salt and chocolate when they PMS-I was dead on with that one.

I never thought that I would feel as good about my decicion to stay home as I do. I know I am doing the best by my kids, and I have few regrets. Would it be nice to have a second income? Yes, but it would suck knowing that I came across it by paying for daycare or sacrificing time with my Hubby. Would I have gotten a job if it took any longer for Hubby to find one? Hell yeah, I'm an optimist, but I am not stupid, and I will do my best to make sure my kids never go without.

I never realized that I would be doing the budgeting and bill-paying, but for the most part I am pretty decent at it. I set the amount we must live within, and we do it. I never dreamed that I would be so thrilled about my youngest having a bowel movement, my middle child saying button, or my oldest being quiet for five freaking minutes. I didn't think that it was possible for a woman to stay sane with three kids at home, two of whom are in daipers, but I seem to be holding up pretty well. I didn't realize how much it would fundamentally change me as a person. As much as I miss late night outs drinking overly-priced coffee and chillin' with friends, that time seems trivial to me now. I enjoy my child fre time, but I miss them every second of it. I enjoy doing things without my Hubby, but I wonder how he' doing every minute. I am heavily reliant on my family, but they would fall apart with out me.

I am also keenly aware that my family is my Hubby and boys first. That is another feeling I never expected. That family would be more than Mom, SisterGirl, and Auntie. They are all part of my family, as is Jazz-dad and uncle Rice, and Auntie Step, and the in-laws, but I have a family that is mine, seperate rom all the rest. I also couldn't have told you before I became HW@K that I would voluntarilly sever all ties with my dad and his family. It hurst, but it hurts less than if I stayed involved, and it saves my boys dealing with what I did.

If I were to write a simple Housewife Training Manual, it actually would be very simple-set all preconcieved notions behind you, try to enjoy every minute, and never be afraid to ask for help. No one would buy it, but there it is.

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