A two-income household becomes a one-income household, and dad stays home!
Sure, you’ve heard the stories of stay-at-home-dads before, but now you can read it from the outside in. Husband@Home is one wife and mother’s observations as her family adjusts to having a stay-at-home-dad.
At first there were proclamations like, “I got this,” and then, “You don’t know how hard this is!” Then there was humility, ending ultimately in a symphony of resolve and acceptance.
When a decision to be a stay-at-home-dad is made, I would imagine it is discussed ad nauseam. Not so this time. It was mentioned initially by my husband in a way that was almost sarcastic, i.e. ‘I may as well stay home with the kids…it just makes sense.’ I suppose it stuck in our heads for a couple days.
On my way home from work I called home to talk about what’s for dinner and how freaking starving I was, and then I say, “So…the other day when you said…” before I finish he knows where I am going. “Yeah,” he cuts in “I have been thinking about it, just let me think about it.”
Okey-dokey, not a problem! This one was better left alone. He had to come to this decision on his own. It would be the most challenging and important job he has ever taken. The stakes where high, no vacation, but the benefits could be great. I wonder to myself if he is concerned about how others might see him.
Husband bounces the idea off of family members and friends over the course of almost two weeks with nothing but positive feedback. I remain quiet (FYI, it’s killing me!!!) Obviously you know what he decided; otherwise, I would not be here blogging about this experience and how it has changed our marriage and our whole family dynamic. When the subject came up again, he was ready to go forward and not only that, he was excited about it! I asked him a few questions about what his plans were with the girls, daily routine, etc. and we were on the same page. I was ecstatic. . . for a moment.
To my surprise, when turning in our notice to the Director of our daycare, I began to cry! I loved these women! They loved our girls and took good care of them. They cooked hot meals for them every day. They kept them on a schedule and taught them how to say the pledge of allegiance. Although it was not a Christian school, these wonderful, southern women just happened to sing “Jesus loves me” loud enough for these kids to accidentally pick it up! (For me this was a good thing.) I was leaving that security and trusting (horror of all horrors) my husband/their father to take care of them!
Then it became so clear to me; I was a fool to even doubt for a moment that this was the best thing for our toddlers. Only 2 weeks later, we could afford to go out to eat as a family for the first time in almost one year, and I witnessed the girls responding to their father in a whole new way. They were more playful, loving, and respectful of their father. They wanted to make him proud and for him to be proud of them. It is a beautiful thing to see their relationships further develop. Heaven knows there is no one better to take care of them than their Daddy!
Image credit: B S K, SXC
RugbyMom is a 30-something wife and mother of two young girls, Abigail and Meredith. She received her bachelors degree in economics and is currently working in managed care. Retired from playing rugby, she is now pursuing creative writing as a hobby with the encouragement of her husband and friends (and physician!) Her husband is a stay-at-home father who works together with her to support and love their two children who are little firecrackers (read:stubborn as mules). Together, they make up an average family of four with a conservative belief system and a comedic approach to the daily grind.