A quick side note if I may
Before I continue with this blog I feel I need to explain a little about my character, for those that dont know me or have missed my profile.
I wear my heart on my sleeve, I write what is real to me, no lies.
My blog is about my life at the moment, I am not trying to sell anything or offer to change lifestyles, it’s about the trials and tribulations of a Father in a predominantly Mother’s world.
For those asking the question, I write on here as it makes me feel in touch with the world. Those who have experienced staying at home with the little ones can relate to that feeling that hits you sometimes of isolation.
So this is all me John, a SAHD
So let’s carry on
Just to finish off from last week’s blog of a ‘stay at home dad’ (SAHD). I would like to add ‘why’ I am the one at home, and a little bit more about the first few months in to this new life role.
So firstly, the why.
Helen had always been honest with me about wanted two children and being the age I am and having been through all this before it took a lot of deliberation and soul searching.
This was never a spur of the moment decision, we spent weeks, months and even a couple of years talking, going through the plus and negative sides to everything.
One of the subjects we discussed during the time was that, if we could afford it, we would want one of us to be a stay at home parent until the children were both at school.
So here I am and as I have mentioned before, taking on the toughest role of my life.
Of course, all this is not without sacrifice, Helen is giving up that chance to be a stay at home Mummy, instead she leaves her boys behind at home to fend for her family. As for me, I have given up that opportunity of being that 56yr old guy who goes to the pub every weekend with the lads and basically do as I please.
Before I get on to those first few months, let me share with you one of those times in life when you really don’t see the wood for the trees, when the answer is there in front of you. A perfect example of how your head gets completely frazzled when looking after little people……. Also, one of the great parenting questions, when am I supposed to shower when I have these two boys snapping at my ankles all day.
Shower at night, when they’re asleep I hear you shout. This cannot be done as the pump motor is next to the boys room, my shower is the other side of the wall of Riley’s cot, so it would wake them. So naturally you find yourself jumping in the shower when the opportunity arises, Grand parents are around, a friend round for coffee, Mummy is about, I think some of you may get the picture here.
Ok, so it finally dawned on this old brain last week. Please don’t laugh. But in the main bathroom where I have bathed the boys every night for the past eight months is a shower!! It’s right next to the bath!! So yes, I can sit them in the bath and step in to the shower less than two feet away!! All this time I had been so focused on the shower in our ensuite ….. I know right, what a muppet!!
When Helen set back off to work I had four months before the school holidays.
I have added this picture as it was taken just before Mummy went back to work after maternity leave.
In the early days I would often vent on Facebook, you see I didn’t really have any network of friends in my position, not straight away. I remember commenting that if I was having a good day with the boys that there was always the ‘tag team’ of dinner and bathtime waiting around the corner to really mess my day up!
I learned pretty quickly that to survive I had to get out of the house as often as was possible. Initially it felt very daunting, the fact I was having to leave the house on my own with the boys.
Charlie was in preschool back in March, attending Wednesday and Thursday mornings. So I was left with Riley for two mornings a week. It was during this time that I knew, once the summer holidays had come and gone I would be adding Tuesday mornings to Charlie’s preschool time.
You see, when it used to be just Charlie and I attending the local toddler group it was fine. It was just me and him and we could paint, chalk, and play til our hearts were content. Once Riley came in to the equation, a lot of my time was really spent on him and I would watch my old toddler mate, Charlie having to entertain himself at our toddler group mornings. I don’t think Charlie minded too much as he was almost give free reign to attack the biscuit bar!!
It was during this time I decided that Charlie would be better off at his preschool ‘little stars’ on a Tuesday morning. I chatted it over with Mummy and that was put into place after the summer school holidays.
Charlie and Riley soon became thick as thieves when they realised it was just one parent watching them, I tried to stay wise to their moves. Below is a picture of them clearly planning their escape from the living room!
I always make sure I take lots of pictures daily for Mummy and she can often be found on a quiet evening sat on the sofa, glass of prosecco in one had and my phone in the other, catching up on her little boys.
These first few months were educational, an eye opener in the world of a stay at home parent. I had a young baby that insisted on waking pretty much every day around 4.30am and I would do my best to shield Mummy from this, this was my role now and I was determined to make it work.
I guess one of the saving graces was the time of year, it allowed me to get out with the boys, even if it was a walk to the park. Those of you that follow my Instagram will know from pictures and videos it’s one of our favourite pastimes.
This picture is from May when Riley was sporting his new set of wheels, mind you now he’s walking he doesn’t want to know that trike anymore!
So this leads me in to the Summer holidays, a real test of my abilities and I don’t mind saying so, a period of time that almost broke me…..
*Mummy starts a new job
*Mummy away one to two nights a week
*No preschool or toddler group
*Over 6 weeks school holiday
*One of the hottest summers on record
*A trip to the doctor’s
I will explain all in next week’s blog;
‘the school summer holidays‘
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I hope you have enjoyed this addition. Please bare with me while I try to judge if my offerings are too short or too long. Also I am still feeling my way around the layout of this page. This is why any advice on blogging is more than welcome
2 thoughts on “A stay at home parent (continued)”
Love reading your blog, more so as it’s a man perspective off what a woman would really do. If only so many other men would realise how challenging it is.
Your doing fab!
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I know what you mean about not waking a sleeping baby……….I couldn’t even look at my tools without the kids crying yet I would go to work in someone’s house and they’d say kids are asleep just carry on , the kids won’t wake! Wtf, why can’t my kids do the same……….now my kids are grown up teenagers all they bloody do is sleep
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