It has been about one month since my beloved husband became a House Husband and it’s fair to say: I am having a quasi identity crisis. I feel a bit lost!
Our baby doesn’t solely rely on me anymore. House Husband can take care of everything. I have the freedom to go and do whatever I want, whenever I want – and I don’t know quite what that means.
Initially, it was wonderful! I could go for coffee and meet friends and read and write and exercise and nap! What bliss! Without a baby constantly in tow, tasks like washing dishes and showering became quick and easy.
But fast forward a month and the house feels crammed and I feel peripheral. Superfluous. I have no “special” roles. (I still breastfeed, but this can be substituted by a bottle). University doesn’t start for another two months and I am yet to secure part-time work. So what the hell am I?
I do enjoy being a lady of leisure, but only for one or two hours on a Sunday afternoon. It’s like taking a bath. I love the idea of a long, hot, steamy soak. But I only last five minutes in the water. I yearn to do something meaningful, something challenging.
So now I’m all out-of-sorts. I feel like I’d (finally) figured out and settled into the role of Mother. Bub and I had a great little routine: an intricate daily dance of play time and nap time and feed time and long walks and trips to parks and cafes and the library and gymbaroo. We were getting along so well, just the two of us. We’d spend most of the day together, then my husband would come home and we’d readjust and continue for dinner, bath and bed. And now that’s all akimbo. Everything is different – again.
Now I feel somehow distanced from my baby. Distanced from his moods, his needs, his whims, his every little delight and frustration. We were moving together, growing and learning together. But having another carer in the home has created a kind of buffer between us. My sense of his moods and his needs is a little hazy – not as clear and immediate as when it was just the two of us alone, for hours at a time. I miss it. Yes, it was really trying sometimes, but that was my role. My very clear and rewarding role.
I’ve been pretty irritable of late. My fuse has been short. It is only in writing this blog that I realise that this may be the reason why.
So here I go again. Adjusting and readjusting into a new day-to-day routine and into who I am and what I’m meant to be. And this is how life will be for the next few years. My roles and responsibilities constantly changing depending on work and study and home, depending on the age of our baby, depending on baby 2.0. As a family, we can really only look ahead six months at a time. It’s unsettling, yes, but sometimes you just gotta roll with the punches. (And try to lengthen that fuse, somehow).