Between 6 AM and 8 PM, Ashtyn napped for a total of 20 minutes today.
It was a challenging day to say the least.
And going to bed the night before at 2:30 AM because I worked didn’t help either.
Today is one of those days I don’t feel like being a parent. I’m super exhausted and Ashtyn won’t cut me a break.
She’s been super clingy lately and we had a long weekend that we are recovering from.
Her new thing is being super clingy. And if you set her down to use the bathroom she tantrums to the point of vomiting.
I’ve been alone with her for the past 4 hours and I have 7 more hours to go.
I haven’t brushed my teeth and coffee has been my only meal of the day.
I know, I know. I’m lucky to have a healthy baby, etc. etc. Just let me bitch, I don’t do it often.
Blah. Just blahhhh.
Per my normal routine, Ashtyn and I were picking up food from a restaurant to bring to Lindy’s work so we could all eat together.
I was carrying a cup of coffee, a takeout bag full of food, and a baby. I saw a bus boy carrying a huge tray full of dishes that he had just cleared from a table and he was struggling to open the door to the restaurant, so I held the door for him and he thanked me.
After he walked in, TWELVE other people entered while I struggled to hold the door. Not one of the customers who walked in thanked me or offered to hold the door in my place.
Once I walked out of the restaurant, a woman looked at me and shook her head, as if she could sense my frustration with society.
Why are people so inconsiderate?
Ashtyn has been asleep for over an hour and a half this morning, which is very unlike her.
Don’t get me wrong, I am most definitely not complaining. Quiet time for dad is not easy to come by these days and I am enjoying a cup of coffee and Rob Dyrdek’s “Ridiculousness” on MTV while Ashtyn naps in her crib.
It’s like she knew I needed this time. I have been struggling the last few weeks with work, child care, and sleep. As many of you know, I work graveyards and some days I am up for over 24 hours with no naps between work and watching Ashtyn. This schedule has been wearing me down and I know Lindy can sense it and I know she feels awful.
It’s just not healthy for me to function on such a small amount of sleep, especially considering the nature of my job.
We’ve actually started playing with the idea of hiring a part time nanny to be here at the house for a few hours while I nap in the other room before work.
I don’t know what our resolution will be, but I’m trying my hardest to be a patient and attentive dad, despite the fact that I feel like complete shit.
At times I feel angry. Today, I’ll change diapers all day, feed Ashtyn, rock her to sleep, console her, entertain her, and more from 8AM - 4PM. I will do laundry, make lunch, tidy up the house, and prepare to leave for work. I will take no nap, Lindy will arrive home and I will work from 6PM - 7AM the following day. My work is difficult and can be very stressful. I wish I could talk about my work days, but I’m not allowed to and most of you would be horrified to hear about it.
Sometimes it can all be a bit overwhelming.
I feel selfish for being tired and wanting relief. Shouldn’t I just be content with the fact that I have a beautiful family and keep my mouth shut? Of all people, I should know life could always be worse. I want to be more positive, but we all have our weak moments.
Honest dad is being honest.
Today has been a tough day for Ashtyn and by association it has been tough for me.
It doesn’t help that I started out with a negative outlook on the day because Lindy forgot to tell me that she works late tonight. I don’t think most of the male population understands how hard it can be to stay at home with a child. Today I am alone with Ashtyn from 8AM - 6:30PM. I am her sole source of entertainment, attention, food, diaper changes, you name it. It’s hard to be ‘on’ for that long with no help.
Ashtyn has been constipated for 2 days and not herself. Today, she finally pooped (7 times before 2PM and once on my hand).
She has been very needy today and cries if I set her down to change her diaper or tie my shoe.
My arms and shoulders are sore from holding her and my legs and back hurt from wearing her and standing / walking all day.
But it’s moments like this picture (which was taken after an emotional diaper change) that keep me sane.
Raising children ain’t always easy but it sure is rewarding.
This has been a rant.
Shit Ashtyn is having a rough day today! Just when you think you have it all figured out…
She has periods where she is fine, interrupted by periods of screaming and crying for bloody murder. She seriously goes from a smiling baby to streams of tears and ear drum shattering screams and I don’t get it.
From the noises and faces she is making you would think someone is poking her with a needle! I hope she can pull it together for tonight, because we have a big holiday event and it’s a big deal in my family.
Poor baby. I wish I knew what was wrong and how to fix it.
This daddy is hungry, has a headache, and is super tired.
Come home Lindy…
Some of you may already know this, but my wife is brilliant. No joke, she is ridiculously hardworking, smart, and very likable (I know, I know - “then why is she with you Jeff?”). To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, let me share some concrete evidence: Lindy was taking classes at the local college when she was in high school because she surpassed all the classes offered at her school! She gave the inspirational speech at her high school graduation! She worked full time as a preschool teacher during college to pay for her education (she never received any help financially and never took out any student loans)! She graduated Summa Cum Laude (with highest honors - a GPA over 4.0) in college! She got hired right after she graduated by one of the most prestigious school districts in the state to teach Honors and AP English as a 22 year old in an economy where veteran teachers are struggling to find jobs! She’s the type of woman who could be a doctor, engineer, professor, or a fricken astronaut depending on what she focuses her attention on. She loves literature but possesses an insane aptitude for every subject the education system has to offer. In college, I couldn’t pass this one math class and I had taken it twice already (I failed once and dropped it the second time). Lindy did not need the class for her major but took it with me so that she could help me pass and I did!!! Lindy got the highest grade in the class and was the first one done on every exam. Needless to say - everyone hated her.
Why am I bragging about my wife? Because lately we have been having a tough time with her working and being away from Ashtyn. It has been really difficult for her because I know that she wants to be home, but at the same time she is great at what she does and has so much potential to be a great mother AND an amazing professional. Sometimes, I think she wishes that she didn’t have so many opportunities, because it would make her decision to stay home with Ashtyn so much easier.
However, Lindy and I are both competitive, hardworking, and driven people who understand life on so many levels and we know that the sacrifices we make now will benefits our children in the future. Unfortunately, that doesn’t make it any easier.
Weekly, Lindy and I have discussions about our home and work situations. They are becoming more frequent and serious with each conversation. I don’t know what the future holds but I’m blessed to have Lindy as a co-pilot.
And I know that every generation before me has provided a social commentary on this observation.
But I’m concerned.
When I was a child, I had a childhood. I didn’t explore the internet, I explored my neighborhood. I didn’t text, I talked. I didn’t poke or like, I played.
It troubles me
That childhood today is spent inside and online rather than outside all the time.
That scraped knees and ice cream trucks have been replaced by YOLO’s and I don’t give a fuck’s.
What happened to the concept of respect? When the consequences of a dirty mouth was Irish Spring and having the door to your bedroom was a privilege and not a right.
Curfew was cued by the illumination of the street lights.
And you accepted the consequences of your actions.
Fast forward through adolescence and now I’m the enforcer of consequence.
And now as a parent of today’s generation
It’s not even worth reading so I put it behind the cut.