Hubby is away for a week.
Maybe I shouldn't admit to this and maybe this is insulting or a bad sign, but things are just easier when he's gone. I have been wracking my brain the last few days trying to understand why? Why do I feel more at ease? Why is the house cleaner? Why is the dog not annoying the heck out of me? Why do I feel like I can do anything and go anywhere without hesitation?
I think I finally figured it out. It's certainly not easier physically in the amount of tasks I need to do in a day. It's mentally and emotionally easier because of my expectations.
Expectations. They are a killer.
When Hubby is here, work constantly calls on him. And it stresses. me. out. Work calls him while we are enjoying a nice day at the park together as a family. Work calls him when we are starting our Saturday morning lying in bed and making tents, looking forward to what lies ahead for the rest of the day. Works calls when we are expecting him home for dinner. Work continues calling on him when I am waiting up for him to come home.
When he is here I expect him to pitch in and it's disappointing when he can't. When he needs to tend to work I am stuck, usually last minute - to take the dog for walk, to put the laundry away, to feed the dog, to make lunches - many of his usual chores. When I get stuck with them time and time again it is emotionally draining. It's tiring and it puts me in a horrible mood. I can't and I try not to take it out on him. His job is important. It's just unfortunate that it takes him away from us so often and makes things fall on my plate more often than not. I am always trying to stay strong. This is something that has taken me a long time to accept, but I can't deny that is still bothers me at times.
So while he is away this week, E and I are doing whatever we want whenever we want because we don't have to worry about being on call. We have a great morning routine and evening routine. I haven't seen my house this clean in weeks. I'm getting a ton of sleep. I am not letting anything get in our way. I feel free.
I think I need to take this approach even when he is here. If I don't expect so much from him, maybe things will be easier on all of us. If I don't grumble every time I have to take the dog for a walk. If I don't pout every time I need to fold and put away the laundry or throw the garbage out. If I just expect to do everything even when he is home, his pitching in will be more of a blessing. If I assume that all the chores are already on my plate, like they are this week, things will be more easily accepted. I know it doesn't seem fair, but it is our reality at this time. Maybe it will work?
Have you ever found things easier when solo parenting? Seems crazy, right?