Friday, July 28, 2006

It Takes Balls

I am a patient man.
I am.
It takes a heck of a lot for me to show my anger and frustration.
Hell, ask my students.
One student, a kid we'll just call "D" to protect him, spent the whole year trying to upset me.
His goal was to have me turn red and yell at him in order to prove that he could be annoying (he never did it).
I believe in The Tao, and it keeps me calm.
Yet, here I am at midnight, after an exhausting twenty-four hour period, and I am angry. I mean I destroyed the sand-filled stress ball (it popped).
Let me show you my day. We'll start at midnight of yesterday.
My son can't sleep, so I take the midnight shift so my wife can sleep. I invent games and talk to him for two hours, then he eats. After changing his diaper, I fall asleep around three a.m.
I'm up at 6:30 when he starts crying to be fed. (He's still at the needing to eat every few hours stage, but it's getting longer in between.) My wife has plugged ducts, so I have to run back and forth from the kitchen to microwave towels so she can have moist heat on the ducts. Then I change my son's diaper, and go shower.
With my son still eating, I start breakfast (bacon, eggs, waffles), plus I empty the dishwasher.
My wife, full from eating, goes back to sleep with my son. This is my only break until I started writing this. I read the Star Tribune and USA Today, then I check my email, read some blogs, and do some work for my mother (she needs some help...and I'm doing it for free).
I also start the laundry and figure out the chores for the day. Being Thursday, tomorrow is trash pick-up.
The kitchen is first, I wipe down all of the counters and appliances, then sweep the floor.
My son wakes up and needs to be changed, so it's diaper number three for me.
After the change, I see that I have to get to my dentist appointment, so I run out the door.
(Side note: I still don't like the dentist. The curse continues, however, as the young, "hot" dentist everyone liked left a week after seeing me. My hygenist was not happy about that and cut my teeth to hell with the floss.)
Back home at noon. I've only eaten one piece of bacon and one waffle.
My wife hasn't had the opportunity to shower, so I take my son while she does so. This also leads to diaper number 4. I care for my son for 3o minutes, then my wife takes him back, so I can mow.
Now I mow the lawn, then trim and edge, then clean up all the weeds, and take the can and the bags to the curb.
Next I take out all the trash from around my house, wipe down the bathroom, and change the kitty litter.
My wife has to feed again, so I'm on warming duty again (it's every other feeding), plus we have diaper change number 5.
Once done with that, I run down to finish the laundry and change the sheets on our bed.
Evening rolls around, and I make dinner, plus, while getting fresh herbs from my garden, I discover and pick all the ripe tomatoes.
Dinner is finished, so I do the dishes, and take out the last bag of trash.
Then I take my son so my wife can nap again.
Finally, I help my wife feed him again, then I change his diaper again (number 6) and play with him while my wife does work-related stuff.
Then he eats again (he's starting to cluster-feed as he is about to have a huge growth is almost week 6 of his life), so I'm on warming duty again and change diaper 7.
Finally, my wife goes and lies down and I take my son until ten minutes ago when he eats again (and I changed diaper number 8).
So why do I bring this up? Well, for starters, this is a typical day for me now. Just change the dentist office to the grocery store or some sort of errand that needs to be run (I will be getting the oil changed in the car soon. Still have to do that one).
And the anger? Well...someone had the audacity to claim that I wasn't, "pulling my weight," around the house. Another comment was that I wasn't doing enough.
And the killer? My wife said that I had it easy, "because you don't have to feed him like I do."
Ok, my wife I will forgive. She's having a bit of a rough time right now with the plugged ducts, the guilt trips from her mom about how far away we live, and with her boss trying to get her to do work even though she has six more weeks off from work. I'll let her go.
However, the other people who tell me I'm not doing enough can kiss my ass.
I'm not doing enough? What am I supposed to do, get implants so I can feed the kid? Am I supposed to take him 24/7 so my wife can be free to do whatever she wants when she wants?
It takes a tremendous amount of balls to tell a man who hasn't really slept in awhile, because he's doing everything he can to help his wife keep her sanity that he isn't doing enough.
It's like telling the robber that he isn't holding his gun the right way. He isn't going to appreciate it, and neither do I.
I get that you miss her, I get that you want her back to party, and I get that you feel we live too far away, but back off!
You know, Jesus wouldn't have the patience I have been showing. He would go all Willem Dafoe in The Last Temptation of Christ on your asses.
Those of you without children cannot even fathom how much work this is. Those of you with children but who had nannies do all the work cannot say anything period.
Did I say things I shouldn't have? Yes! I admit it, and I apologize. I'm doing it in the blogosphere like I did it in public.
However, I will also be blunt. Just because your husbands or significant others never lifted a finger, just because they slept through the night and said things like, "your turn," for years on end doesn't mean I am like them.
I would love to go to a movie, but it won't happen, and I'm fine with that.
And I'm sorry, the dentist visit is not, by any means, "a resting period." That doesn't count as time off. It's not a mini-vacation.
Bottom line: Shut the fuck up, back off, and stop telling my wife all this bullshit!
She's kind of fragile right now, and you aren't helping her.
In the next few weeks you'll either see her or have her back. Until then just let her rest.
As for me...well...we all know how you feel about me. You stay out of my way, I'll stay out of yours.
(Sorry for the rant folks. I just needed to vent.)


sister1 said...

Oh Mookie.
I'm sorry it's been so rough.
Disconnect the phone and keep your wife away from the e-mail.

You're great. You're doing 20 times as much as my hub ever did.

Love you


J.P. said...

Yeah Leab don't worry about anything your doing a great job. You had every reason to be angry with these people for what they said and did.

Hope Poozer and your wife are doing well to Leab.

Joshua said...

Hip-hip hooray for a husband who takes his duties as a devoted partner seriously.

In the words of my carribean friends - 'dem jus playa hatin.

Your not Mr. Mom, you're not a man-wife. You're sounding like a good husband to me. Some people will never mature enough to see past their selfish, distorted, TV-fed perspectives and stereotypes.

jacreative said...

well, if i can be any consolation . . . it gets better . . . and rather quickly. I have an almost 12 week-old son and with each week it gets better. Now he's sleeping better and grinning from ear to ear. Keep up the good work!