Saturday, November 13, 2004

I am Mad and Sad

On Thursday E told me he had to work on Saturday so we wouldn't be able to take the kids to gymboree. I said "ok, that stinks, but maybe my Mom will come down and hang out". Well my Mom can't because she has to watch my nephew and last night E springs it on me that he has to work both Saturday & Sunday. I was pissed. Ok, so he does have a new job but he never said "hey this new job pays me more but I have to work 55 hours a week." because if he did, I would have said it is not worth it.
Now before you get on my case, I understand he is the sole breadwinner and I understand the burden of being the only income earner in our house, but he wanted kids as much as I did and if I had to work the cost of two babies in day care here is $2k a month, that would be 80% of my salary. It wouldn't have been worth it. Since he has started this job he went away for 6 days, had 4 business dinners and now is working this entire weekend. He has only had this job for 1 month. Today I know he had to be there at 10am, and the place is 1 hour away. He left at 7:30am and won't be back until 6:30, that is a long day to be alone with 21 month old twins. We had a fight last night that was bad and he didn't come to bed last night. I don't know how much longer I can do this. My back has spasms I am so stressed out. I have nothing to do all weekend. I have no friends or family here, I have no fun, I have no stress release. My entire day revolves around E getting home so I can talk to an adult.I could drive the 1.5 hours to my hometown but a lot of my friends and family work on Saturday and really it is not fair to keep the kids out all day like that when they have a schedule they have to stick to, or I pay the price.
I can't afford to go shopping or get a manicure or pedicure. There is just nothing for me to do and I am sinking into this deep depression that I am frightened of.
I am so sad today and I am hurt.
I am sure this post is a big ramble.

7 comments:

  1. TG,

    You should very well be mad and sad, family life should arrive take a front seat to work. Hopefully this will not be a habit.

    It's too bad we're not closer, we could hang out and have a fun. You deserve to relax a little bit.

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  2. Reading this I was reminded of when my children were little and my husband worked out of town or incredibly long hours. You should try to make a point to have something planned during those days when he won't be home--even if it's just to the park or to Burger King or something--just so that you get out of the house and aren't alone feeling lonely. I know how difficult this must be for you. And when hubby does come home, maybe you should get out by yourself for a bit just so that you can clear your head and feel good again. Good luck. I know it's hard, but you are not alone.

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  3. Oh, I feel for ya. Gorgeous' schedule used to keep him away like that (he worked nights and slept days, so I had the baby munchkins all to myself all the time). It was awful. I'm so sorry you have to do this alone so much.

    Hey, if you want, when I'm out, we can make a weekday date so you have an excuse to get out and we can get together.

    One thing that still saves my sanity is trips to the mall/stores/random places. If I need something, I can buy it. If I don't, I still get the hell out of the house and the munchkins are entertained by a change of scenery. Bonus points if you can find a mall with a play area.

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  4. It was hard for me when My Kid was young and I never got out of the house - and he was just one child! Please believe that every mom goes through this and it WILL GET BETTER. I had no friends and no one to talk to either. It is hard. So hard. If he's in a new job he's got to prove himself. It sounds torturous, but give him time and support him in this. It WILL pay off for you, the twins...your whole family, in due time. HANG IN THERE!!!

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  5. It must be so hard without any family around for support.You need adult chit chat to get you through some of these days. Do you belong to any play groups? Almost every area has twin groups for mommies and kids.
    You have to save your sanity without making your husband feel guilty for busting his ass in a new job. I can guarantee that he would much rather be hanging with the family on the weekends than working.
    Try to sit down with him and maybe he can help you sort through a solution. You have to decide if it's all worth the stress.
    If you didn't live so far away I would help you out! Keep in mind that you are not alone. Many of us have gone through this in one form or another.

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  6. Thanks guys so much. You all brought tears to my eyes. I have a lot of good friends even if they are on the internet!
    It has just been hard because it is getting so cold here and the babies are at that stage where they get cranky when we go to a mall or store.
    Thank you for your support and ideas!

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  7. Hey girl, I'm replying on Tuesday just for you.... the work-life-balance thing is a tough nut to crack for lots of couples. And it IS a balancing act. I can understand where your husband MAY be coming from... I've worked in high-pressure offices where the employee either had to perform or he/she would eventually be shown the door. And, in that kind of atmosphere, if an employee is ever perceived as a slacker or a weak player, it can be really, really tough to shake that label no matter how well they do later on. And if your hubby is the new guy in the office, he has to know that he's being watched especially close at first so there's added pressure to do really well in that first year.
    .
    And then there's the whole career-track issue coupled with a recognition that there are going to be demands for resources (i.e., money) down the road and maybe he feels like he's go to make some sacrifices now in order to get more later on.
    .
    All this creates a need to really communicate with your spouse about where you are now in all phases of your lives, where you want to be, and how to go about getting there. One fundamental obstacle is going to be a realization that employers don't tend to pay big bucks for working a 40-hour week. But you and the family have legitimate needs that need to be met as well. Don't allow this to fester until you have a big resentment toward your husband... you each need to be on the same page and have some agreement as to where you're headed and how you're going to get there.
    .
    And you've had some really good suggestions above -like the playgroup thing. My wife (Trish) did the playgroup thing, too. She also does the following things:

    1. She found a "nurturing mom's group" at a local church. Now, we aren't religious fanatics by any means. Especially me. But she did find this group that meets once a week that has maybe 15 or 20 local moms who are all in the same boat. I'm not sure exactly what all they talk about, but I know that certain issues such as handling anger seem to be big themes from the literature she brings home. That particular group also has nursery care for the little ones who aren't in school yet. And I'm not even sure if it costs anything. I think she has to bring goodies once in a while, and that's about it. But she's made friends in that group and it's a source of adult interaction and support.
    .
    2. Trish is a stay-at-home mom, too. We have 3 kids, ages 4.33, 2.8, and 1.5 years. This past July, when our youngest was a year and a couple months, she decided to work part-time, every other weekend. Trish is a RN and she was working in home health before being a mom. She pretty much lucked into a job - just called a local hospital with a visiting nurse section and inquired about jobs and they called her in for an interview and hired her a couple weeks later. She works 8 hours every other Saturday and Sunday (16 hours per weekend). It gives her a little extra cash AND gets her out of the house AND helps her to feel like she's doing more than wiping butts and cleaning up messes week-in, week-out.
    .
    3. She signed on as a consultant for Southern Living at Home. I think I have to make this whole issue a posting on my blog. She makes some cash doing this, but more than anything, it's a source of social interaction for her. I have mixed feelings for my own reasons, but I do recognize that this is one way she has some fun pretty much every week and it doesn't cost her anything to do it. In fact, she may make a few bucks by doing it. But there's lots of outfits out there that sell by having these parties - Trish has gone to candle parties, make-your-own handbag parties, lingerie parties... and a few others I can't remember. Just a thought.
    .
    4. We got a flyer in the mail for a 50-something woman who was looking for work as a nanny. Her rates are a little high, but she's very, very good with the kids. She comes to our house (right now) Tuesday and Friday afternoons - a total of 8 to 10 hours per week. With tip, she usually makes somewhere between $200 and $240 per week - depends on how many hours she works AND on how many kids (2 or 3) she has to handle when she's here. But that gives Trish two afternoons she can get out and do her thing like getting nails done, etc.
    .
    5. Finally, we found a cleaning service to come into the house every other week. They charge $100 per visit, but the house gets cleaned pretty good this way every couple of weeks so all we have to do is try to maintain it until the next visit.
    .
    Now, some of this stuff costs some money, and some doesn't. Trish didn't do all if it all at once, either. Trish first found her nurturing mom's group. Then after #2 was born, we got the cleaning service because the little ones were just too much of a challenge to keep up with all the time. So that got the house cleaned good a couple of times per month. After #3 was born, we started with the nanny on Friday afternoons only. Now, when I'm working big hours - (seasonal workload), we have our nanny add another half-day. When things are slow and I can get home at a normal time, she's now doing two half-days per week. Then this past summer, Trish started doing the part-time work and the Southern Living at Home gig pretty much around the same time.
    .
    But it's all a balancing act. We've had quite a few conversations over the last few years about our need for money, her need for me at home and for a life of her own, etc. There are some days I have to try to get home a little early, say, so she can go host one of her Southern Living parties. Then there are some Saturdays I have to work - and some evenings, too. There is that need to compromise and most importantly, to communicate. I can't emphasize enough the importance of communicating before a resentment builds up - by then it's no longer as much an issue to be resolved as it is a f'n problem.
    .
    Good luck to you.

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