My husband is having a very busy time at work at the moment. He’s working really hard and doing a brilliant job, I’m proud of him. It’s a career moment he’s worked for and totally deserves to be praised and feel good.
I am also proud of me. Because whilst he’s busy at work, receiving all the praise and validation that he deserves, I’m also working my arse off. I’m maintaining everything else in our lives so he can focus. I’m also still working. So, I’m arranging any extra childcare we need covering (thank you amazing family!), doing the pick-ups and drop offs and 12-hour days with a toddler on the days I’m not at work. I’m up for the 3am nightmares, doing extra early mornings, all the bath times and long tantrummy bedtimes. I’m making sure the fridge is stocked and the washing is done, and the house is clean. He gets home most nights to a clean house, a cooked meal, and a sleeping happy toddler. I’ve arranged the play dates and bought the birthday presents and sent the cards and kept up with medical appointments and the meter readings and made sure Bobby doesn’t have too much screen time and eats his 5 a day. Oh, and I’m also growing another one of our children inside me…
When my husband finishes his busy work period, he’ll go for drinks with his work mates, celebrate, maybe have a day off to recover, he’ll have a meeting with his boss to tell him how well he’s done, and we’ll all tell him we’re proud.
I’ll just keep going.
Don’t get me wrong, I have busy periods at work, and he has to pick up the slack, but let’s be honest, it’s still me that’s being cried for at 3am, it’s me organising everything that’s needs to be in place to allow myself more time away from home. And I’m right back in the thick of motherhood every time I step back through the front door.
I don’t want to diminish my husband’s achievements, but maybe a mothers/primary carers achievements could be celebrated and recognised more. The work we do is pitifully undervalued. It’s constant, thankless and no one takes us out for drinks and tells us where smashing it. Next time my husband is busy and/or my child/ren goes through a particularly difficult phase, not sleeping or illness or meltdowns, and I get through it, someone please give me a glowing appraisal and buy me a pint.
Here’s a pic of me using my child’s foot to cool me down when I was ill with a temperature in the midst of it all.