Today is the first day of Adam’s new job. As a stay-at-home parent when your spouse gets a new job, so do you.
In a lot of ways the new job is a much better fit for our family. Although Adam was lucky enough to mostly work remotely for the past 5 years, the new local job ends the 10 months of weekly travel to DC that we have all endured; eliminating a lot of auxiliary stress. It brings new opportunities for professional growth for Adam.
Even though the DC commute was brutal the other three days a week Adam got to work from home, which was such a gift to us as a family. Now Adam has a traditional job that is almost an hour away. So he adds 10 hours of commuting to his work week and I add an additional 10 hours of solo parenting to my load.
I would love to say that I am only excited and grateful for this opportunity, but the truth is I am nervous that I am not up to the challenge. I was a work-at-home mom when Ellis was really little and I became a full-time stay-at-home mom right before Calvin was born, but I have always had a super supportive involved partner. When Adam worked remotely we saw him for lunch, he could run inside if the boys were doing something adorable (or abominable) and he was right there if I just needed an extra pair of arms so that I could go to the bathroom. Now we are on our own for 11 hours a day. I feel like I just got drafted for the varsity team from the rec league. Although let’s face it there is nothing amateur about parenting. It is relentless and all consuming for one hour or eleven hours.
I am most dreading that at the end of a long day I will be so drained that I won’t feel like parenting or partnering with Adam. I am mourning the loss of our teamwork as we each delve deeper into our own zones (professional for him and home for me).
I don’t know how this will go (since we aren’t even half way through day one) but I hope we are able to cope. I know we will have to get creative. I have my eye on a gym membership with built in childcare. Don’t be surprised if you find me reading in the locker room just to get a break.