Saturday, July 18, 2009

I Should Post Something New You Say?

Oh, I suppose it is overdue. So often I think of things I want to write about. Sitting on the bus or train to or from work I think of things. Or lying in bed, I think of things. Often, at work, while working on an issue for a user I think of something that's bugging me or that I think may be blog worthy. But then once I get to a place where I might actually have a few moments to write, I can't think of shit.

Really? Yes, it is true. Mostly, by the time I have a few moments to myself I've completely lost everything that makes me ME. When I have these moments for me it is only after working a full time job outside of the home all day, coming home to fix dinner for my brood, performing various household chores, spending time with afore mentioned brood and then putting them to bed. Once they're in bed I usually have a few other things to do and a husband nagging me to do yet more things for him. And then, usually around 11pm, I have some time for myself. I get up before 7am. So, yeah, I don't really get much time for me.

Being a full time working mom - outside the home - and the "bread winner" to boot is a tough job. A mother's job is never done whether she works outside the home or works as a stay-at-home-mom. Yes, I know that the job of a SAH-Parent is never easy and is also never ending. But somehow so much more always falls on the mother even when the SAHP is the husband.

I often hear from my SAHM friends complaints about their husbands who work hard (or not) outside the home to provide for their families. Complaints that these husbands "get" to go to work and then "get" to do whatever they want every night once they're home while my friends, these SAHM's, are constantly on the go taking care of the house and the family. Well, how does that play for the moms who work and the dads who stay home? I wonder what it's like for other families out there who are in similar positions as my husband and myself.

My husband has been unemployed for going on 3 years and not by choice, mind you, but it is what it is and we make do on my income alone. In fact, we have often made do on my income alone far more than we've had 2 incomes. Mostly, I don't mind this. In fact, it wouldn't bother me at all if I knew that my poor husband was happy at home with the children. But he's not and the fact is that he just is not able to make enough to pay for daycare at this point should he go back to work. And he especially could not support us on any salary he would make getting back into the workforce after 3 years off. Again, this is NOTHING to me. I have always had a sense of need to work outside the home. It is important to me that I contribute to the household.

When my now 11yo daughter was a baby my role was reversed. My ex-husband made more then than I do now and I was a SAHM because I thought that this was what I wanted. I soon realized that I equate my worth with my ability to provide for myself and not take from someone else even if he is my husband. Having been through that situation during my first marriage I can sympathize with my current husbands frustrations and diminished selfworth - though I am sure he does not think about this.

My husband, Lord bless him, is a GOOD man. To me, he is a desirable man. He is talented in so many ways, he is witty and funny and so amazingly full of love. But for some reason he is unable to keep a job for more than a year it seems. Honestly, I don't understand it and neither does he. And at this point, after his longest stretch of unemployment, he is feeling extremely disenchanted with life in general and especially with our family. He is miserable quite frankly. He hates being home with the kids. He sees my having to work as a gift. He tells me I'm lucky that I get to go to work and doesn't understand why I am jealous of him. He also feels that he does everything in the home while I sit back and laze around like a sloth and can't ever understand when I need a break - from both he and the kids. He truly and sincerely resents me my gainful employment. I have been with my current employer for 2 years now and prior to this position I worked on the Nike WHQ Campus for 6.5 years. But for me, working has never really been anything but a must. I have to work. There is no choice in it for me and especially not now. We are dependent on my income and the benefits I receive through my employer.

How do you come to a workable solution in a situation such as this with the unemployment rate sitting at over 12% in our beautiful state of Oregon? At one time I thought for sure we could handle this arrangement but now I fear it can't hold together much longer. It's become an immense strain on our marriage and, truthfully, I have no idea how to fix it.

So, there. That's what's on my mind right now. It's 2am. I should be in bed asleep having been up for more than 19 hours and yet, here I sit, writing something I am sure my loving husband will read but am not sure how he'll react. Truth. I only write the truth.

And now, off I read for a few minutes until I pass out from sheer exhaustion. Until I blog again....

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