My husband works full-time and has made it that I am able to work part-time, so that I can be home to take care of the kid. Naturally, most activities that involve her, are primarily my responsibility. I handle the playdates, kids’ parties, and doctor appointments. I arrange extra curricular activities and align my schedule to sit there while she’s participating. Hair appointments, day trips, school picnics, swim-gymnastics-art classes and the entire gamut of summer and winter entertainment during school breaks. Not to mention the family outings that need to be arranged and put together for the three of us to enjoy together.
I am sure you see the painted picture. I am a very busy amusement director.
I don’t want to portray an image of my husband not doing any work or being uninvolved. He is great with his fatherly chores. Making lunches, combing hair, checking homework, picking up and dropping her off to school, annual father/daughter movie night, Disney on ice every year.
Again, you see the picture. The point of this story is not his lack of activity in raising our kid. I feel that we both handle our responsibilities equally and fairly. The point of this story, though, is the kid’s response to it.
Case in point: A friend arranged for a group to head out to Cook Forest for a canoe trip. Because of previously set plans, I was unable to go. But my hubby and the kid still did. And they had a great, fun time. After my activity was complete, I actually enjoyed the free time to myself before their return home.
So, here’s the thing–the praise my husband got when they got back! I had to hear about it for two days! My daughter was non-stop in her compliments and pride in her father taking her on the trip. She couldn’t stop talking about the fun they had and regaling me with multiple stories of what happened in the canoe, on the riverbank and on the ride home. The food they ate, the heat from the sun, the cold water. “Daddy did this…” “Daddy said that..” “We laughed at this…”.
Now don’t get me wrong. I am so glad when those two share happy moments together. What mother wouldn’t be? But what took the cake was when she passionately told me that she really appreciated his taking time out of his busy schedule to spend time with her and that he deserved a thank you card.
So, okay. She is right. He did do a nice thing. She should show appreciation, and he did deserve a card. But…uh…where is mine?!!! What about all the days that I spend crawling through bouncy houses getting rubber burns on my elbows and knees? The parks and farms we’ve traveled to–stepping in goat, bunny and chicken poop to feed the animals? The bee sting from blueberry picking? Getting lost and walking a mile, in the heat, to get to the museum for her to draw on the sidewalk as part of the Chalk Festival?
We’ve done things, people!! Fun things!! Well-planned and thought out things! I haven’t gotten any “thank you” card! I haven’t heard her speak with passion to anyone else about how great I am for taking her anywhere! This is just the recent story of many with her applauding her father for his spending time with her. She tends to sing his praises after any outing that they share!
But, I will never stop her from doing this. I will always encourage her to say “thanks” to him and go the extra bit to write a card. Let’s get out the glue gun and put bows, pom-poms and glitter on it to jazz it up. Let her understand that her dad is kind and that she’s special to get some special time with him!
Dare you say that I am jealous, though? Why, yes. Yes, I am! lol