Monday, May 24, 2010

This One Goes Out to the Ones I Love

Without going into any specifics, I can say that work has been incredibly busy and incredibly demanding these past few months. My job has kept me in the office longer. It's eaten up more of my weekends. It's made sure that after the work day is done, and after I trudge home across the Valley and scarf down a quick dinner, I've gone to my study and continued to plug away until after WonderWife™ went to sleep. I'm not complaining about it. I very much like my work and I know that at this moment in time, I'm lucky to have a job.

What's so hard about these times, aside from the mental and physical toll of working so much, is how it affects my family. The absence that it creates because I'm not there.

I'll be at the office, watching the clock move closer and closer to 6:30, which is the latest I can leave if I am going to be able to see the Bean before he goes to sleep. I've been missing that deadline a lot these days, and when I do I will call home.

"Am I going to see you, Daddy?" he asks with a hopeful lilt in his voice

"No buddy," I say. "I'm still at the office."

The sound of his disappointment is crushing. "Why?"

This is a really valid and reasonable question, by the way. But one that cannot be answered so that a 4 year-old will understand.

I feel the worst for WonderWife™. When I'm not around to be a parent, there's nobody else but her. And I've been through enough battle of the wills with Sprout to know what a soul-draining experience it can be. I know that WW™ takes up a lot of slack when I'm working so much. The tough part about her job is that when I'm on the clock, she's on the clock. This is always front and center on my mind when my days, weeks and months get crazy.

Not that either of us would change anything. We both have the lives we wanted.

I'm in the home stretch of this busy period now. I know I can make it. And I'm really looking forward to a break in the action. Because I don't like coming home after the kids are asleep. I don't like not being able to curl up on the couch with my wife. Right now I feel a little lonely, a little isolated from the ones that I love.


Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I know that when I didn't work and was able to stay at home I felt bad for my husband. I did. I knew he'd rather be with us but he also had to do what he had to do to support us.

It's awesome to hear the perspective from the other side.

Great post.

FilmFather said...

I hear what your saying, DGB. I was laid off in January, and the new job I landed in February has consumed my free time and doubled my commute. Luckily, I haven't had to deal with missing my kids' bedtimes like you have, but on most nights I'm lucky if I see them for an hour before they have to start their bedtime routines.

You're right about one thing: at this moment in time, we're lucky to have jobs. I try to remember that after after each horrible commute home makes me want to immediately jump on Plus, my wife talks some sense into me; that helps.

Best of luck balancing work and home; sounds like you'll have some time soon to catch up with the Bean.

ZenMom said...

Awww. I'm sorry it's been rough on you all. But I'm glad to hear there's a light at the end of the tunnel! Hang in there!

James (SeattleDad) said...

Glad to hear that there is light at the end of the tunnel. I hate being away from my family, so I can completely understand where you are coming from.

Vancetastic said...

Good thing you got to stay home and watch the Lost finale with WW last night ... even if you were disappointed by it. ;-)

SciFi Dad said...

It's not quite as bad around these parts, but it still happens from time to time so I know how you're feeling.

Hopefully, it has died down for you now and you'll be able to be a more active parent again.

Mely Wilcox said...

Cheer up! There is light at the end of the tunnel and it seems yours is getting closer. :-)

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Thanks everybody. Your support means a lot.