So in the last eight weeks or so, my husband has been gone … a lot. Between harvest and his full time job at the mill, he has been home for about three days in the last 55ish. Generally, on the days he works at the mill, he is home in the evenings to help with “the evening madness,” but many a night lately I have had to navigate supper and bedtime alone.
Now, I know that many mommas out there are “going it alone” (for a whole myriad of reasons), and there may be a few “suck it up, buttercups” going through your minds as you read this. There also may be a few, “You only have two kids to care for. I have three!” (Or four, or five or more). For my “older” readers (if there are any out there), you may be thinking, “We all did it. And most of us did it without our husband’s help. What are you whining for?” These kinds of comments always irritate me.
When I say that I wish my husband was home more, I am simply wishing my husband was home more. Yes, to help out, but also to spend time with us. We love him, and we want him to be with us. When I say that I am dreading him leaving again at the end of the month for another eight weeks (to finish up his journeyman), it’s because I don’t want to be without him. At first glance, it may seem like I want my husband here because I need some help caring for the kids and looking after the house (which I would love), but I also want my husband here, because he’s my husband. I chose him to be my life partner, my partner in life (and right now that involves caring for two small children … I know, ONLY two). I also want my husband here, because he is the father of our children. I don’t want him to miss out on their daily antics. I want him to know our children (inside and out) like I know our children. And, perhaps most importantly, I want my husband here because it breaks my heart when Big M says, “I want Daddy,” “I miss Daddy,” or “When’s Daddy gonna be home?”
So this is what I am “whining for.” I want my husband to be home with us. I also think when a mommy “mentions” that she’s “going it alone,” all she’s looking for is a little compassion and understanding, and maybe a few ounces of empathy. Being a mommy is damn hard work, whether you are a mother to one, two, three, or more. As mothers (whether our kids are little, big, or somewhere in between), we need to put ourselves in each others’ shoes just a little more. We also need to ensure we don’t “rank” how “bad” we have it sometimes or how much “worse off” we are than other mothers. Motherhood is hard. Period.