Friday, February 21, 2014

More chores coming, July 2014

I've been thinking a lot about all the ways that life will change for us when Baby #2 shows up.  There are the obvious ones, more diapers to change, another mouth to feed, back to breastfeeding clothes... but then there are all the little ways in which I know that we'll be affected.

More toys everywhere.  Another bedroom to keep clean (if Working Dad gets his way on room arrangements) and lots more laundry to do.  And I can't help but think that most of this will fall on my shoulders.

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While I know that Working Dad won't be working the week we bring home the new baby, I know that by week 3 he will be back at the grindstone.  I also know that darling EG will be in summer day camp (read daycare/school) full time until at least the end of August, so hopefully that will also give me some time to figure out how to balance new baby with crazy 2-year old.

However, I worry.  I worry a lot.  No, it's not good for me, but I don't really know what to do to stop it.

Already I feel like we have a hard time trying to feel balanced about things. Numerous studies show that overall there probably isn't much difference in the amount of time we spend doing things.  Its just that at the end of the day, I'm multitasking while Working Dad is doing one thing.

Take dinner last night.  Yes, it started late.  I didn't pick-up EG until 5pm, and then when we got home there were kids playing outside so of course EG doesn't want to go inside the house so Mommy can make dinner, she wants to play with the balls.   And despite some of these kids being in their teenage years, I still had to be outside, because they were playing in the street and EG is just as likely to run towards to car after the ball rather than away from it (all worry aside, she's actually really good about the street.  Yesterday I told her she had to stay on the side walk, and when the ball rolled into the gutter she got down on her hands and knees, crawled to the edge of the sidewalk to get the ball, technically staying on the sidewalk.  Smart girl...)

But by the time I convinced her to go inside it was almost 5:30pm.  So, we started dinner late.  Then EG decides she wants to have nothing in the world besides being in my arms, and cuddling under my chin. Cute, yes.  Convienent, no.

In walks Working Dad, who manages to take her for about 5 minutes so I can get some chopping done.  But back she comes.  So there I am making dinner (two pans on to cook, the kettle, stirring, pouring, measuring) and there she is in my arms.  So, yes, I do think I did more.

But in reality we spent the same amount of time working with EG, and working in our home... just doing it differently.

He did the dishes, he cleaned the pots and tidied the kitchen.  While he was doing that I was putting EG to bed, and then I sat at the computer to print photos for EG's scrapbook.  Is that my hobby?  yes.  Do I think it helps/effects EG?  Yes.  While I'm doing that I'm doing the the diapers for her.

I know that the primary thing to make things work is to be clear about your expectations.  I learned that with Working Dad long ago.  As long as I tempered my expectations for what he could realistically do, things worked out pretty well.  But still, it's frustrating to try to find a balance.

How do you find a balance?  How did that change after baby #2?  Any advice?

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