My husband lost his job in April. Like so many Americans, we wondered where life would take us, and where we would live, what we would do and how things would change.
Still, we are lucky. We have been careful over the years and have saved. Also, unlike many who are out of a job, Ross worked for the same company for 12 years and was given a very respectable severance package that included our health care. This allowed us to breathe a huge sigh of relief while he looked for other jobs. COBRA is not cheap and no one wants to be ponying up for self pay insurance while pregnant and jobless if they can avoid it.
Now, it turns out we are even luckier. We found a job in Charlotte, NC, where we live and today is the first day.
I already miss our little break from the grind. The kids got to see their Dad more than they ever had. I really think that he and Sophia bonded more than ever before. Ross got to see Miles take his first steps. He got to walk them to school. We got to plan family adventures and include the whole family. This is all very sweet you say.
Or you might have already realized what I just did as I watched the car pull out of the driveway this morning.
I had help for 3 months, and now it is gone. I am now again just mom and the kids. Waking up – just me. Breakfast – just me. Activities – just me. Oftentimes since Ross travels a lot bath and bedtime is – yep – just me. But the worst is this. Ross likes to cook. He liked making meal plans. Even though it bothered me because I felt like he was in my office space a little too much, he even couponed and went grocery shopping. He cooked, for the most part, the entire time he was out of work. And now – you guessed it – Dinner Time – just me. Dinner time is the bane of my existence. I liked cooking before I had kids and now it is like a cloud that hangs over my head. What will everyone eat? What time should dinner be ready? Do I have everything to make a meal? Did I leave enough time in my day to make it? How can I become fabulously wealthy so I don’t have to cook at all? (Yes, I think this quite often.)
I still do not have a plan for tonight. It is 1:30. I have an O.B. appointment at 2:45 that now I will have to take the kids to. Yipee – just the thought of taking both kids in that tiny exam room for Sophia to ask why I have to take my underpants off and then what the doctor is looking at makes me gag. Then the thought of coming home to deal with dinner makes me want to cry. Given that I am pregnant – it is a total possibility that I will do both. This afternoon may bring me, gagging, to tears. There is no chance I will look like a human much less a woman when Ross gets home. Not that he is expecting me to but I always thought it would be nice to look all sexy when the hubby walks in the door.
So, we all prefer some things over others. I hate dinner while my husband hates lots of planned activities with the kids. I am going to go on a road trip with the kids since we have the last two weeks of summer WITH NO SCHEDULED ACTIVITIES and no family vacation because Ross went back to work. I am insanely going to take my 2 kids, ages 1 and 2 on a trip to see the sights of my state North Carolina and then head up North. I am aiming to find places to stay never more than 3 hours apart so that the driving is manageable. I am also aiming to avoid cooking my own dinner (I am happy to help) the entire time. I swear to you having a plan for the day and not worrying about dinner will be worth the pain of packing for and actually executing this trip.
I have lost my mind but I will gain some precious memories with my kids. I will take tons of pictures because they won’t remember a damn bit of it. That’s the kicker with this age. They don’t even know how much I rock!
P.S. Wherever you live check out your states’ sites and state or national parks. Lots of times they are free (always leave a small donation) and even if not, it is a great way to support you state with a small donation. Many historical sites are also free or very cheap for little ones and while they may seem like they are just for the older kid and grown-up crowd they actually have tons of stuff for little ones.
P.P.S. I lived in NY for years and did not go to the Statue of Liberty. If you are within an hour or two and you have not done that one, get your butt in the car or on the train or the subway and GO! We will do this when the kids are a little older. I can’t wait.