My husband left the house to go to work this morning. Nothing unusual in that, he does that five days a week. But today, as I watched him pack his bag, collect the keys and walk out the door to drive to work, I had a few mixed feelings. As I surveyed the messy house and ticked off my mental to do list which included the care of a screaming four month old who was refusing to sleep and a three year old in the middle of toilet training, I realised I was really, really angry.
I usually have no problems reconciling my stay at home status, but today I really wanted to go to work. I imagined driving to work by myself, with no ongoing commentary or crying. I would listen to the news on the radio instead of the latest in car audio entertainment, Peppa Pig or The Wiggles.
When arriving at work, I’d sit at my nice clean desk in air conditioned comfort and make small talk with my colleagues about the weather or the cricket. I don’t even like cricket, but right now I’d be really happy to discuss the latest series. At morning tea time, I’d make my leisurely way to my favourite coffee shop, perhaps purchase a muffin; sit and watch the traffic go by.
However my reality is very different. Firstly, just getting the children ready with all the accompanying pram, nappy bag, water bottles and necessary children’s toys, that often I can’t be bothered. Then I have to try and navigate a coffee shop with a pram while my toddler loudly demands a ‘babycino’. I haven’t even left the house yet I can already picture fellow coffee shop customers looks of displeasure as we wheel/walk in. Ahh the serenity!
I wouldn’t mind even working on something that required actual thought. I know, how ridiculous to even consider to use my brain on something other than trying to remember when I last fed the baby, or discussing with my three year old why she has decided to be Elsa from Frozen today (btw it’s because she can do magic). Don’t get me wrong, I am fully appreciative of my husband and what he does for our family with little complaint. I also know that he would love to spend more precious time with his girls, but still I can’t stop the nagging feelings of jealousy, knowing that my husband gets to leave the house and have a child free day, while I can’t.