My husband and I were having a discussion… well, this discussion happens almost daily. Him complaining about how tiring his job is. Coming home exhausted from the drive long drive, etc. I get it. I give him mad props and accolades for it. But get this… he absolutely loves what he does. He loves treating his patients. He loves teaching his students. Yes, those are the good parts. I’m sure the bad parts are dealing with the politics at school, dealing with the drama with his offices, employees, and patient complaints… oh and the long drives. I mentioned that, right? Well yeah… I hear about it all the time. Haha. But no, I do know that driving an hour to two hours multiple times weekly is not a walk in the park. My buttcheek and legs are hurting, numbing up, and cramping just thinking about it.
But here’s the point in my story. I said one night, “I don’t know anybody who complains so much about what they love to do.” Yes, I’m a jerk. But I was at my wits end feeling like a part-time single mom. His response…ladies… prepare… “you love being a mom. I never heard another mom complaining so much about taking care of her baby she loves so much!!!” WTF. Yeah, my “Go Apeshit Button” was blaring. But I used some recently learned coping mechanisms and just took a breath.
I said, “why don’t you spend every waking moment with her and see how hard it is. You will never get the full gamut of my daily life. Yes, she fulfills me. She makes me laugh. She’s my everything. And yet, she breaks me down like no other. And as a human being, you can only take so much before you lose it. You are “fun dad.” You get to do whatever you want because you have insta-sitter (me)… and blah blah.” To that, he said… “well, you get to go to MNO and go out.” My response… “do you think those evenings happen whenever I want and at any time? No way, those takes weeks of planning and lots of effort. I don’t know what spontaneous means except for when O spontaneously in rare blue moons falls asleep without me having to PUT HER TO SLEEP!!!” Icing on the cake… “well you have free time now when she’s in school.” Me: “who do you think keeps this house clean, your clothes washed, your clothes nicely folded into your drawers, your lunches and dinner made? The fairy?” Him: “Well, we have a cleaner once a week. Your life is not that bad.” Ahahahahahahahaha. Men.
Do you see where this story is going? Men are from Mars. Women are from Venus. They don’t know what it’s like to walk a mile in our shoes and will never. They say we don’t know how stressful it is for them. Please. We do. Most of us have worked at some point. We can empathize with the politics. We can empathize and feel compassion about the dramas of working for others and with others in the workplace. What I do give to them is yes… they do carry the bulk of the financial burden. And yet again, many single parents do it and have experienced the stress as well.
Complaining about what you love to do… I didn’t know verbalizing how hard it is to be a mom was complaining about what I love to do. Haha. Looking back at our conversation… it’s comical. Yes, it is my calling and a job to some degree. But to use that as an example just blew me away. Don’t get me wrong… he’s a great person… but sometimes… his analogies just don’t work.