Friday, June 24, 2011
Parenthood 2.0: Trading Places
So this has been an interesting week...for many reasons. But it has been a pleasure to spend the past four days as Mr. Mom...or #domesticdad if you are following me on twitter.
My wife was offered a job at the local high school to work in their main office for their final week of office hours before summer. It was a great opportunity and I was happy to have a little one on one time with the Gage kids! In my mind I thought how hard could it be right?....WRONG!
It was actually a busy week! It was Keller's first time at attending Vacation Bible School. So it was a matter of finding the right rhythm to the day! There were some sweet moments with Kerrington, but I discovered something about myself. I am not the multi-tasker that I thought I was! Or maybe I am not a good multi-tasker when it comes to the needs and plans of the kids! The schedule of a stay-at-home parent is detailed, accurate, precise and well executed! Even better, there is room for adjustments for kid's temperament, naps, potty accidents and so on!
AND DON"T GET ME STARTED ON THE HOUSE DUTIES!!!!!!!
I must confess that it was a sad experience to spend so much time cleaning the kitchen and dishes, loading the dishwasher and so forth...only to go and start another load of laundry and when you walk back into that once beautiful kitchen there are new dishes, and spells on the floor and a trail of food crumbs because it was time for a snack! And then there is the laundry...there are no words in the universe to describe how disappointing that process can be! IT JUST KEEPS COMING!
But here came the most humbling experience for me. I was picking Keller up from bible school and I had to enter into the church's main sanctuary! One of the volunteers informed me that he was in the restroom and would be right out! As I am standing there, I hear this lady whispering to her friend about me. "Oh, he must be new at this parenting thing...I would never let my baby not have any shoes." EXCUSE ME!!! Did she really say that out loud?! Of course the inner Madea was getting fired up...so I decided to turn around and face these "ladies" and let them know that they were totally out of touch. With the pivot of my foot, two things happened. First, i noticed the lady was holding a baby not much older then Kerrington...WITHOUT SHOES!!!! Yes, you read that correctly! The child did not have on shoes and she was trying to talk about my baby not having her shoes....it was just.....sorry got off track. The second, as I turned, Keller ran out of the bathroom and saw me and decided to run to me. As he gave me a really big, nice hug, somehow he ended up pulling my gym shorts down! And there I was, standing there with a baby on my hip, a child on my leg, and my shorts somewhere in between but not where they should! If you ever wanted to see a black man blush...this would be the moment! But I overcame this obstacle...I pulled myself together and pulled my shorts up and continued with the rest of our day! As we got in the van, the three of us were having a great laugh about the whole. Although I think Kerrington was laughing because she could...or she had gas.
The rest of the day and week continued and I somehow managed to survive!
I never thought of myself as one of those "husbands" who doesn't understand what their wives go through in raising kids and doing all that they do. But after these four days, I am deeply aware of what goes on in her life and it has made me all the more grateful for who she is and what she does for our family! So to all you stay at home parents, know that you are loved and supported. You may not hear it enough, but we are grateful! And to my wife, You are the best! You are the hardest working person in this family! You are loved by your children and adored by your husband!