Daddy Does Home Alone

Wed, 18 January 2012, 12:28 am

I’m getting a taste of the single life. For the longest time, Tricia has been the devoted wife while I take many a trip to Chicago or other cities on various business excursions. I have also been known to take my share of guys trips. So, I thought it was only right to encourage my lovely bride to take some time to herself for the first time in almost forever. She left for Florida bright and early Sunday morning. She’s hanging out with one of her close friends and clients, leaving me home alone to pretend what it’s like to be a single parent until Thursday night.

Let me just say, that I have a new appreciation for a great many things. Here are my top 10.

10. My Wife, the Maid. It’s not that I don’t clean up things around the house, I really do. It’s just that when you work with a partner on household stuff, it doesn’t seem nearly as repetitive. You don’t have to pick up the same exact kid mess 3 times. She usually picks it up twice and I’ll get it once.

9. Groceries. You know what? They don’t magically appear. Somebody around here actually goes to the store and buys them. Huh.

8. My Wife, the Bill Payer. These things just keep appearing in the mail. Not that I thought money magically disappeared from my account. Or, did it? hmmm…

7. Executive Chef and Meal Planner. This actually should be my #1. The fact that I married someone who has something on the table every night to delight me, is an absolute treasure. I will forever listen and participate when she says “What should we have for dinner?”. That is one of the more stressful questions, I now realize. Granted she has so much more practice than me that the answer comes more quickly. Still…what a pain!

6.  Chief Bottle Washer. Those darn dishes don’t clean themselves, despite the farcical idea of the “dishwasher”. Shame on whoever invented this “magic device that cleans your dishes”. You rinse every dish anyways – saving them in a special place for days. Then you have a massive pile to unload and put away.

5. Chief Laundry Officer Ditto. Except that my jokes about how I don’t know how to use the washing machine will probably never fly. I’m very good about putting my laundry away. I didn’t realize how much disipline there is in actually getting it to that point.

4. Taxi Driver. The kids and me have to be or want to be in 10 different places per day. Hello car, I really never knew where all your gas went. NOW, I know.

3. Spare Time. There is so very little of it for things like, oh I dunno…blogging, or working out or being a Cubmaster. Clearly running a house with 2 people is far more efficient if anyone has ambition to accomplish anything outside of keeping the home in one piece.

2. Work And… The fact that someone would run a household and have a job, and still have a smile is nothing less than remarkable.  I’ll be just fine, and I’m betting I could last a few weeks. I also know that running the house takes practice, and I’d find ways to be more efficient.  Still, though that kind of multi-tasking is not to be underestimated.

1. My Best Friend. It’s just strange. When you are so used to sharing the hustle and bustle, and talking about it at the end of the day, things can seem very quiet. I have the oddest thoughts. I think about the things that Tricia takes care of, as I go about taking care of them for a week. I think about what it would be like if she weren’t here. Yes, morbid. Of course I would adapt. People do it all the time. But, our life together is soooo much better as two. So much more efficient, so much more interesting. Absence really does make the heart grow fonder.

Let me say, this experience is absolutely awesome. My kids were looking forward to the change in parenting from Tricia being the primary homemaker to me. I’ve done some things differently (like allowing them to do hot tub snow angels as an example), but I do find myself saying the same things that I often think my wife harps on too much. It’s as if all of the practice she has in her role has led her down a certain path. I could see myself there too. I’ve learned a lot this week. I could totally do this. You know what? I don’t really want to. I’ll be happy when she’s home, and I’ll have a different perspective on how great she is at her jobs.

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