A lot of you have either recently had babies or are thinking about having children and want to know how to deal with the struggles. I'd love to shed some light on this, based only on my personal experience, well, because...that's all I know. And don't get me wrong, children are wonderful little bundles of love, but I'm not going to talk any more about that. Why? Because you've heard that crap your entire life. If you want to know all the good stuff about having kids, go watch something on the TLC channel, show up to a baby shower, or read a greeting card. I'm going to give it to you straight. Of course I'll preface this by saying I have a two year old, Maverik, who is such a wonderful piece of my life. Not just because he's lovely, but because how we work
|This seems fitting. Maverik |
Having a child is hard work. Now that's a cliche if I've ever written one. But you knew that anyways. You know they are lots of work because they have to be changed and burped and fed nonstop in the first year. They cry and they need, need, need you all day long. But that's easy; that's common knowledge. Here is what mom's don't tell you: sometimes I don't want to be with my son. Sometimes, I don't like him. If you have labeled me a bad mom by those last couple of statements, please read on. I assure you I'm a fabulous mom because
I am able to acknowledge those taboo emotions that ALL MOTHERS FEEL. (And if they don't feel it, they are just not aware of it.) It's not a crazy notion either. I mean when a two year old has a tantrum because he want to screw the lid on his own sippee cup and you don't let him because that would only lead to a mess- of course you want to get away. And when it's the end of the day and he's now onto his third tantrum while you're trying to get through to the cable company, it only makes sense that a mother would not like her child in that moment. My advice: if you want to have kids, or already do, then be honest with yourself. Kids wreck your body, your paycheck, your house and your love life. They get sick and force you to take off work. (you KNOW a chef isn't going to miss a day of work) Then you've got the guilt to deal with. Guilt for being a mom and not joining your friends for dinner when no sitter is to be found. Guilt at work for taking sick days for the baby. And of course the guilt for your own child because you aren't there every two minutes for them. Guilt that you can't give them everything you'd like. Guilt when you get mad and raise your voice. Guilt.
The other thing mom's don't really talk about it the emotional work that children require. Of course as a chefs' wives you know you'll be doing 95% of the babywork. But that work isn't just diapers, cleaning, cooking, laundry, doctor's appointments, park visits, googling what that rash is, baby-proofing, planning birthday parties, taking/uploading/editing/ordering pictures, picking up medicine, administering medicine, taking temperatures, disciplining, building towers, reading books, giving baths, applying Desitin....I'm sure you get the picture.
The most exhausting part of being a mother for me is the emotion behind all of the above. For instance, taking Maverik to the doctor is work enough, but before any of that has to happen, I have to first realize he's sick, then decide if he needs to go or not, make an appointment, make sure I've got cash to pay the copay, and take off work is needed. Because of Erik's hours he literally isn't able to do any of those things. But I would feel so much better if he were there by my side reassuring me that Maverik is just a little sick and doesn't need to go or cleaning up vomit instead of me. I mean it would be a miracle if I came home and Erik told me Maverik was sick and that he took care of all of this- because that's how it is for the chefs. They don't even have to WORRY about the children, because mommy takes care of the work
and and worry.
This is something that Erik and I are constantly working on. I'd absolutely love if Erik came to me and said, "We should start planning for Maverik's birthday party," or "I think he's due for a check up soon, can I take care of that?" It may seem insignificant, but the emotional work behind being a mother is a heavy load to carry.
I hope I didn't scare anyone into a childless life, but I guess I just want everyone else to be as informed as I was about children. If you do choose to have children, I want you to be as happy as I am because you are not afraid to say, "I need a break".
Food is Love,