“STOP right there Jack. You need to finish your Pepsi max before you hop into bed. And you are certainly NOT taking those Tim Tams in there with you either!” Those actual words came out of my mouth on a Monday night at 8:30pm. The one just gone actually. Rock bottom solo parenting, I believe I have just found your definition.
My only excuse, and it’s not even a valid one, is that I’ve been solo parenting for a week or so due to my husband working interstate. Now, I myself come from a single parent family, you would think I would be the first to appreciate what’s involved here, but I just had no. freaking. Idea. Granted my mother didn’t work and didn’t have to fight the logistics of getting three children to three separate learning institutions every morning and then retrieve them each evening, with the very real threat of shitty traffic and the setting sun putting her in the precarious position of being a no show as the lights were being turned off, but she certainly knew what it was to have no one to fall back upon.
So yes, back to Monday night. I managed to collect all three before they turned the lights off at their respective care and as I barrelled through the hideous traffic, my mind wandered to the mince sitting in the fridge and just knew my kids would be gnawing through my tibia if they had to wait for spaghetti that night. I made an executive decision; shite night was getting a new timeslot - Mondays. KFC loomed on the horizon.
And here’s a stark admission, my husband does a shitload around the house. This is starting to become startlingly evident the longer the week goes on. Right now, I can honestly say that as I sit here and type this in my lounge room, it looks as if someone has removed the roof while I’ve been at work today and shat directly in the middle of my house. And even though I tidied up, it is becoming increasingly apparent, he just has a natural talent to do this better than me. There are stray jumpers dropped where they were removed, upended empty plastic cups left to languish on the coffee table, Wii games strewn in front of the TV. I’m guessing these are usually taken care of by him before I return home from work in the evening. Pretty sure he would have found and turfed this mornings porridge before Jack had the chance to polish off the 12 hour old remains as well.
Another thing he must be
anal fastidious about is returning the DVD’s to the Video store on time. Because right now, the Mean Girls 2 DVD cover is sitting on the Dining table sans disc. We rented this last Friday night. It is now 4 days overdue and the disc is AWOL. This is something my husband revels in, finding missing shit.
He makes it his mission and is ALWAYS successful. Me, well I have no god damn idea where it is. I have torn this place apart and it is still MIA. I fear we about to topple our $98 late fee record of Christmas 2009.
The hardest thing is that there is no one to fob to. I’m it. I’m the responsible adult in this family. The go-to person. And as much as I guess you’d say I’m the stronger personality in our relationship, I’m beginning to realise, he’s the stronger person. He’s just a quiet achiever.
I do notice a difference in the washing and the food consumption however. That shit is totally under control. As he changes THREE times a day and eats enough food to feed three armies, there is a definite shift in those areas.
And mine is only a temporary position. I have massive respect for any parent out there doing the solo parenting thing full time. Both time wise and financially, it would kick your arse. I know I joke, but I truly do respect you and your efforts.
I will be most happy to see his smiling, exhausted face this Thursday. And then I’ll kiss him goodbye Friday morning and hand over the reins as we tag team and I fly out to Melbourne for 3 days. And it will be his turn to ride solo. He will find that DVD, that much I can be sure of.