I mentioned to Becky a few weeks ago that Manly was going to be a SAHD once the new baby arrives, and she prompted me to write about my feelings on the situation.
I think my feelings can be summed up pretty easily: I CANNOT FUCKING WAIT.
See, the thing is, we had always planned for Manly to be a SAHD. The only reason he didn’t do so with Mini is that he had to go buy a new sports car a few years ago when we were thinking that we would never be parents. At the time, no big deal. BUT. That *expletive* car payment is almost as our *expletive* mortgage every month. And there is no way that I could pay it for him — daycare is eating my budget and it’s $150 less than the payment every month. Sorry, I’m obviously still bitter about the whole damn thing. Anyway, Manly has been VERY good about getting the car paid off, and based on his last statement balance, he’s projecting that it will be done in August. Convienent, yes. The plan is for him to work through my maternity leave so that a) we have some cash flow and b) we use up Mini’s entire — what is the word, where they take his daycare balance out of my paycheck pre-tax? Is it an FSA? Whatever it’s called, we have to have him in daycare to get the tax break and our money back, plus it lets me have the maternity leave with new baby without toddler-wrangling at the same time, which I am stoked about.
A few years ago, we had a period of 3 months where Manly was in between jobs. He quit the one, and wanted to take some time off before going back to work again. It was awesome — he kept house, cooked dinner, grocery shopped, and played video games. Even with just the two of us, it made such a difference in my stress level not having to deal with all of work and then all of the house stuff too. And he liked getting to sleep in and then planning his day out with no real deadlines.
He’s going to be awesome at it. Right now, we’re all stuck at home thanks to the snow. He’s keeping Mini occupied and fed and napped (heh, he put Mini down for a nap in our bed and curled up to play playstation himself). The only thing I’m doing for them is dirty diapers — Mini fights him way more than me, so I can get them done without everyone getting frustrated.
I’m really, seriously looking forward to not having to deal with daycare dropoff in the mornings. That adds 30 minutes to an hour to my morning routine, making sure everyone is dressed and lunch is packed and settled into the room. Without that, I’ll be able to get to work earlier, and then either work overtime or get home earlier.
(Heehee — as I’m writing this I’m hearing Manly “rawring” at Mini from upstairs and the boy just giggling away. They’re awesome together.)
I know a lot of women want to become SAHM, and I had a few moments of that with Mini, but once I got back to work — it was awesome. I love what I do, and I have worked very hard to get to my position. I think I would be happiest if I could get a six month paid maternity leave, but yeah, like that’s ever going to happen. And really, that’s just based off of how much easier it is to breastfeed than pump. It’s good for me to have that break: at work, I’m at work. At home, I’m at home. I do my damndest to keep the two separated and that makes us all happier. It lets me focus on what I need to do in both places, without feeling like I’m letting the other half slip.
And really, if we get there and try it and it doesn’t work out for whatever reason — we can always put the kiddos back in daycare and Manly go back to work. It’s not a final decision, and we’ll figure out a way to make it work best for all of us.