I can be a #SAHD? (Stay At Home Dad for the uninitiated)
A few months back, Wifey and I were having a discussion about life. You know the one about “Finding Happiness” and/or “How do we pay all these bills without creatively selling any of our orifices on craigslist” kind of talk? You know you’ve had them!
During this discussion a strange occurrence happened. You see, Wifey has pretty much been a stay at home Mom since the birth of our first daughter, Alexus. Not that she’s incapable of holding a job, but in the beginning, I made enough money for her to stay home so she was the one raising our kid…not someone else. Now, flash forward 15 years later and I’m basically still making the same amount of money, which is why I’m now working 2 jobs and she’s kinda sick of being home. Wifey (some call her Shelley) currently has a part time job…but she wants a J.O.B., or should I say a career? So she says to me sarcastically, “I’ll find a full time job and maybe you can stay home with Carter.” to which I just blew off. Then I got to thinking. This could actually work!
Now, I know some people are old school and think “You’re the man, you should be working, not your wife”! At first thought that too. But here’s the thing. I’ve been struggling lately, more internally than anything else, with watching my kids lives flash before my eyes. For no other reason, than a burning in our stomachs for food and shelter, I’ve been working 2 jobs, 7 days a week for almost 5 years now. I’m burnt out. I’m burnt out on the job, the people, the idea of just being a number to your employer that’s easily replaceable. Most importantly I’m burned out at not being around the family. There are days and weeks in the past few years that blend together, I wake up and I feel like I’ve time traveled.
I wasn’t even given the luxury of making it cool, like riding shotgun in a pimped out DeLorean, while the missile packing Libyans chased Marty and me down in the Twin Pines Mall Parking lot. Noooo…this was more like Looper. No explanation, just Poof! I’m old Bruce Willis staring down at a much younger version of me. Though in reality, I’m staring at much older versions of my kids. GREAT SCOTT, where the hell has all of the time gone?
Lately, I find myself just watching my 2 ½ year old son, Carter. This would be our 5th kid for those taking score at home. (Yes, I”m Catholic, though far from practicing. It has nothing to do with religion…unless you count my wife’s nether regions a religion…then I pray to that bad beaver every night!) Too much? Ok, moving on.
Where was I? Oh yes, My kid. Sorry, I still get caught up in in my wife’s… Shit! I”m doing it again! You know, I always attempt to start off serious. I really do!
So I’m watching Carter, who’s laying on the living room floor surrounded by toys, and I’m thinking…”this is it, you’re the last one dude.” Due to surgical enhancements, and my Wife’s gynecologists magician like fingers, we’re not able to have kids anymore. So pretty soon, Carter, along with his 4 sisters will be grown up and out of the house, visiting for Sunday dinners, holidays and any time they can convince us to watch the “Grand Kids”. (Kids if you’re reading this, We’ll take them any time we can!) So I’ve kind of just been itching to enjoy these fleeting moments a bit more. Screw the job. Screw the money. I just want to be a dad. I want to be a Better Dad, one that is around.
So a few days later…you know after the talk I mentioned at the top of this page, I go to Wifey and say, “Are you serious about you getting a full-time job, and me staying home?” She looks at me and says, ‘Yeah, I guess so. Why?” to which I more than excitedly reply with, “Because I would like that.”
Now, over those days and nights leading up to the second part of the conversation, and we’ve had more since. I had thought about all the cool things I could do with Carter, if indeed, I end up staying home with him. Thoughts of having breakfast with him every morning filled me with childlike glee. The idea that I could go with him to his room, and lay on the floor and play with him and all his toy’s for longer than 15 minutes, without having to divert a crisis between his sisters wasn’t too bad a thought either. Being able to just sit and enjoy him, or any of the kids without worrying about how much time I have before I have to be to work, or how much time before they have to go to school. It all comes down to time…and I want more of it!
Then I pondered, I can blog about it too! I’m always trying to wrap some type of creativity into what I do. Also, I thought that a blog could keep me accountable. Make sure that I’m not going to fall into some crutch of just sitting down and watching TV. I do like my TV shows. I knew the term “Stay At Home Dad”,or SAHD for short, but that’s about as far as it went. So I did some research and thought, hell yes this is a group I’d happily belong too.
So in short, the blog was born. I fear that I’m far from the days of actually quitting both of my jobs and being a Stay At Home Dad, but I’m working on it. This blog is only a portion of what I’m doing. I may work a sh*t ton. Probably more than I should…but to add to it, I’m also a full-time podcaster and part-time comic book writer. I’m hoping all of this stuff can take center stage soon and gone will be the days of just being a replaceable number inside a file folder in the Human Resource cabinet.
So this is the first in a long line of blogs about me as a father, a worker and an all around creative person. My goal is to meld all of this together and build a much happier person and family through all of this. I’m sure you’ll quickly discover that my house is much like a sitcom. Something crazy is always happening…and now I’ve got just the place to share it all!
Welcome to Deconstructing Dad!